Last year, somewhere around the same time Facebook shook the media world by purchasing Instagram. The agreement and the purchase of Instagram left the social media titans with 1 billion dollar less in their account. Back then, Instagram was a new and comparatively small app. The basic use of this app was to edit or share photos with no distinct and apparent revenue.
This latest achievement of Facebook, worried both Facebook investors as well as Instagram users. Investors who had put in their hard earned money in Facebook were worried it wouldn’t contribute to Facebook’s bottom line. On the other hand Instagram users were worried the app they had come to love and marvel and enjoyed working with may not deliver upto its maximum potential after Facebook had acquired it.
Hours after the deal went public, Instagram CEO and co-founder Kevin Systrom posted on a blog that he would ensure that Instagram would remain unchanged before and after the deal. And a year later he seems to have fulfilled this promise rather well. He also added, that under new owners, it would continue to improve and evolve.
“It’s important to be clear that Instagram is not going away. We’ll be working with Facebook to evolve Instagram and build the network. We’ll continue to add new features to the product and find new ways to create a better mobile photos experience. The Instagram app will still be the same one you know and love. You’ll still have all the same people you follow and that follow you.You’ll still be able to share to other social networks. And you’ll still have all the other features that make the app so fun and unique.”
Working from Facebook’s offices, Instagram continued to come out with new features regularly. It introduced a feed and profiles for the web, photo maps and a tool called Lux for balancing exposure and adjusting brightness. It also rolled out new filters (Mayfair, Willow and Sierra), an improved camera and tilt shift, and translations for 25 languages. Its following quadrupled to more than 100 million monthly active users, thanks in part to Instagram’s expansion to Android just days before Facebook agreed to acquire it.
What will be interesting is to see as to how long Instagram can remain independent of Facebook.