While I appreciate mainstream web publications, I sometimes learn about hidden technology gems through lesser known publications and blogs. This is one of those times, and I was fortunate to learn about Instagram–the latest photography application for the iPhone.
Developed by Burbn, Inc., Instagram
is one of the top rated photography apps and is quickly becoming a favorite tool of many. I’m no exception and I can think of many reasons why, but for now I’ll limit myself to three reasons to love this app:
1. Easy to use. Grab pictures from your photo library or take a new picture. You can also turn things around for an impromptu self-portait. With 14 photo filters that range from a simple black and white (Inkwell) to a grainy technicolor look (1977) it’s easy to enhance your favorite pictures. There’s also a flash adjuster which comes in handy with filters like Gotham.
2. Encourages sharing. Post your pictures to the public feed, add tags and share through the app, email, Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and more–all with a few fingertip swipes. You can also find and follow friends from your phone contacts, Facebook and Twitter to see, like and comment on the pictures they’re posting. Think Twitter meets Foursquare–the ability to see what friends are doing through the eyes of their camera lens.
3. It’s free–but it shouldn’t be. Enjoy this while it lasts. Instagram is hands down one of the best photo apps on the market, free or paid. This means the developers could have charged or maybe they’re hoping Instagram will do for photo sharing what Foursquare has done for location sharing–make it more popular to share these aspects of our lives with the world than to keep them private.
Whatever the case may be the world is more beautiful and more interesting through the eyes of friends and strangers all sharing their lives in photo. Instagram has made it all possible by turning even an amateur into an iPhone-wielding professional photographer.