Instagram: Join the Billionaire’s Club

9 Apr

Facebook has announced that they are buying Instagram, the free, photo-sharing app. Instagram was launched in October 2010 initially as an app for iPhones but last week became available on Android phones. Instagram is a free app that allows users to apply filters to the pictures they take and then upload them to the app. Users have followers and those they follow. It’s almost like tweets but just pictures and they say pictures say a thousand words (a lot more than 140 characters).¬†Instagram has more than 30 million users and more than 5 million pictures are uploaded each day.

Paul Kedrosky, tech investor and author of the Infectious Greed Blog, says:

“I understand Instagram has 13 employees – so at $77m a head that makes it the most expensive business deal in history that I can think of.”


From Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook page:

I’m excited to share the news that we’ve agreed to acquire Instagram and that their talented team will be joining Facebook.

For years, we’ve focused on building the best experience for sharing photos with your friends and family. Now, we’ll be able to work even more closely with the Instagram team to also offer the best experiences for sharing beautiful mobile photos with people based on your interests.

We believe these are different experiences that complement each other. But in order to do this well, we need to be mindful about keeping and building on Instagram’s strengths and features rather than just trying to integrate everything into Facebook.

That’s why we’re committed to building and growing Instagram independently. Millions of people around the world love the Instagram app and the brand associated with it, and our goal is to help spread this app and brand to even more people.

We think the fact that Instagram is connected to other services beyond Facebook is an important part of the experience. We plan on keeping features like the ability to post to other social networks, the ability to not share your Instagrams on Facebook if you want, and the ability to have followers and follow people separately from your friends on Facebook.

These and many other features are important parts of the Instagram experience and we understand that. We will try to learn from Instagram’s experience to build similar features into our other products. At the same time, we will try to help Instagram continue to grow by using Facebook’s strong engineering team and infrastructure.

This is an important milestone for Facebook because it’s the first time we’ve ever acquired a product and company with so many users. We don’t plan on doing many more of these, if any at all. But providing the best photo sharing experience is one reason why so many people love Facebook and we knew it would be worth bringing these two companies together.

We’re looking forward to working with the Instagram team and to all of the great new experiences we’re going to be able to build together.

Many tech experts believe the success of Instagram after joining Android last week prompted Facebook to jump on the Instagram band wagon. What do you think? Is Instagram worth $1 billion?

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