The wait is finally over!!! Today, on 21 November 2013, Instagram is now available for Windows Phone OS! Read about both parties’ announcements on their respective blogs:-
- Instagram Blog : Introducing Instagram for Windows Phone
- Nokia Connversations Blog : Instagram – Transform and Share Your Photos
When Instagram first launched, it was an app for iOS users only. Then in March 2012, they announced that they hit 30 million users having been only 1.5 years old. In the same breath, they introduced the Android app. While many users with Windows Phone (and BlackBerry) has been asking for the same official app, it certainly took them awhile to deliver.
Instagram can transform everyday moments into shareable works of art. Just grab a picture from your Photos Hub, choose a filter to transform its look and feel, then post to Instagram (or Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Foursquare).
Goodbye, unofficial Instagram apps
Traditionally, Windows Phone users have had multiple choices (see the results of “Instagram” search on Windows Phone here) of unofficial Instagram apps. When I was using a Nokia Lumia Windows Phone, my go-to unofficial app was Instance and recently 6Tag.
Just to show how much Windows Phone users were itching for an official Instagram app, Instance (one of the first and more popular unofficial Instagram apps in Windows Store) reached 330,000 users in August 2013. Instance supports basic Instagram functions like register, upload, view, comment, like and follow. They were getting so much interest, that Instagram started deleting pictures from unofficial Windows Phone apps, and that affected Instance badly. A couple of days later, the issue was resolved and the app was back up again… temporarily.
Then, in August 2013, 6Tag was the latest unofficial Instagram app for Windows Phone and it came packed with so many features, including the new update recently that lets you hide sponsored ads and videos. Until today, 6Tag has remained the most popular and feature packed unofficial Instagram app for Windows Phone.
Meanwhile, Instagram announced that they’ve now reached an official 150 million users 2 months ago in September 2013.
Instagram BETA for Windows Phone
With the wait finally over, I for one am excited on the availability of the offiical Instagram app for Windows Phone today!!!
Yes, the Instagram app is currently a beta version, which means that it’s missing some features and could be buggy. Instagram (owned by Facebook) is working on all the bug fixes to get it to work as seamlessly as the official iOS and Android app.
While the app will launch in beta, only Windows Phone users will have Instagram with unique and personal experiences such as Live Tiles, lock screen notifications and support for fast-resume.
Here are some quick overview of features on the Instagram BETA for Windows Phone available today:-
- 100% free custom designed filters: XPro-II, Earlybird, Rise, Amaro, Hudson, Lo-fi, Sutro, Toaster, Brannan, Inkwell, Walden, Hefe, Nashville, 1977, and others
- Linear and Radial Tilt-Shift blur effects for extra depth of field
- Instant sharing to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Tumblr and Foursquare
- Unlimited uploads
- Interact with friends through giving & receiving likes and comments
- Full front & back camera support
While I don’t have a Windows Phone with me to personally test the app, The Verge reported that it’s missing several key features:-
- Video uploading
- Tag people in photos
- View maps from geo-tagged photos
- Does not support in-app photo-taking, it redirects to your phone’s camera app instead
“We’re not finished, and our team will continue developing the Windows Phone app to keep releasing features and bringing you the best Instagram possible.”
– Instagram spokesperson
So, if you’re a Windows Phone user with an unofficial app, you should check out this new official Instagram for Windows Phone app, although it’s still a BETA one and let me know in the comments below, how you like / dislike it?