Instagram First Day Ipo

Instagram first day ipo

Online photo-sharing and social networking service

Original author(s)Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger
Developer(s)Facebook, Inc.
Initial releaseOctober 6, 2010; 9 years ago (2010-10-06)
Stable release(s)[±]
Android124. / January 14, 2020; 0 days ago (2020-01-14)[1]
iOS124.0 / January 13, 2020; 1 day ago (2020-01-13)[2]
Fire OS123. / January 3, 2020; 11 days ago (2020-01-03)[3]
Windows 1030.1569.12133.0 / April 14, 2018; 21 months ago (2018-04-14)[4]
Preview release(s)[±]
Android (Alpha) / January 14, 2020; 0 days ago (2020-01-14)[5]
Android (Beta) / January 8, 2020; 6 days ago (2020-01-08)[6]
Operating systemiOS, Android, Windows
Size123.8 MB (iOS)[7]
40.76 MB (Android)[8]
Available in32[9] languages
LicenseProprietary software with Terms of Use
Alexa rank 26 (Global, January 2020[update])[10]

Instagram (also known informally as IG or Insta[11]) is an Americanphoto and video-sharingsocial networking service owned by Facebook, Inc.

It was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, and launched in October 2010 exclusively on iOS. A version for Android devices was released a year and half later, in April 2012, followed by a feature-limited website interface in November 2012, a Fire OS app on June 15, 2014 and an app for Windows 10 tablets and computers in October 2016. The app allows users to upload photos and videos to the service, which can be edited with various filters, and organized with tags and location information.

An account's posts can be shared publicly or with pre-approved followers.

Instagram first day ipo

Users can browse other users' content by tags and locations, and view trending content. Users can like photos, and follow other users to add their content to a feed.

The service was originally distinguished by only allowing content to be framed in a square (1:1) aspect ratio with 640 pixels to match the display width of the iPhone at the time.

Navigation menu

These restrictions were later eased in 2015, with an increase to 1080 pixels. The service also added messaging features, the ability to include multiple images or videos in a single post, as well as "Stories"—similar to its main competitor Snapchat—which allows users to post photos and videos to a sequential feed, with each post accessible by others for 24 hours each. As of January 2019, the Stories feature is being used by 500 million users daily.[12]

After its launch in 2010, Instagram rapidly gained popularity, with one million registered users in two months, 10 million in a year, and 1 billion as of May 2019[update].

In April 2012, Facebook acquired the service for approximately US$1 billion in cash and stock. As of October 2015[update], over 40 billion photos had been uploaded to the service. Although praised for its influence, Instagram has been the subject of criticism, most notably for policy and interface changes, allegations of censorship, and illegal or improper content uploaded by users.

As of January 2020, the most-followed person is footballer Cristiano Ronaldo with over 196 million followers, and the most-followed woman is singer Ariana Grande with over 170 million followers.

As of January 14, 2019, the most liked photo on Instagram is a picture of an egg, posted by the account @world_record_egg, created with the sole purpose of surpassing the previous record of 18 million likes on a Kylie Jenner post.

Unified messaging systems asa ipo

The picture currently has over 53 million likes.[13] Instagram was announced to be the 4th most downloaded mobile app of the decade, from 2010 to 2019.[14]


Instagram began development in San Francisco, when Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger chose to focus their multi-featured HTML5 check-in project, Burbn, on mobile photography.

As Krieger reasoned, Burbn became too similar to Foursquare, and both realized that it had gone too far. Burbn was then pivoted to become more focused on photo-sharing.[15] The word Instagram is a portmanteau of instant camera and telegram.[15]

2010: Beginnings

On March 5, 2010, Systrom closed a $500,000 seed funding round with Baseline Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz while working on Burbn.[16] Josh Riedel joined the company in October as Community Manager,[17] Shayne Sweeney joined in November as an engineer,[17] and Jessica Zollman joined as a Community Evangelist in August 2011.[17][18]

The first Instagram post was a photo of South Beach Harbor at Pier 38, posted by Mike Krieger on July 16, 2010 at 5:26 PM.[19][20]

Kevin Systrom's first post, which came a few hours later (9:24 PM), has been wrongly attributed as the first Instagram photo due to the earlier letter of the alphabet in its URL.[21][22] This photo shows a dog in Mexico and Systrom's girlfriend's foot.

The photo had been passed through Instagram's X-PRO2 filter.[23]

On October 6, 2010, the Instagram iOS app was officially released through the App Store.[24][25]

2011: Major funding

In February 2011, it was reported that Instagram had raised $7 million in Series A funding from a variety of investors, including Benchmark Capital, Jack Dorsey, Chris Sacca (through Capital fund), and Adam D'Angelo.[26] The deal valued Instagram at around $20 million.[27] In March 2012, The Wall Street Journal reported that Instagram was raising a new round of financing that would value the company at $500 million,[28] details that were confirmed the following month, when Instagram raised $50 million from venture capitalists with a $500 million valuation.[29]Joshua Kushner was the second largest investor in Instagram's Series B fundraising round, leading his investment firm Thrive Capital to double its money, after the sale to Facebook.[30]

2012: Android release, Facebook acquisition and web launch

On April 3, 2012, Instagram was released for Android phones,[31][32] and it was downloaded more than one million times in less than one day.[33]

On April 9, 2012, Facebook, Inc.

bought Instagram for $1 billion in cash and stock,[34][35][36] with a plan to keep the company independently managed.[37][38][39] Britain's Office of Fair Trading approved the deal on August 14, 2012,[40] and on August 22, 2012, the Federal Trade Commission in the U.S.

Initial public offering of Facebook

closed its investigation, allowing the deal to proceed.[41] On September 6, 2012, the deal between Instagram and Facebook was officially closed.[42]

The deal, which was made just prior to Facebook's scheduled IPO, cost about a quarter of Facebook's cash-on-hand, according to figures documented at the end of 2011.[39] The deal was for a company characterized as having "lots of buzz but no business model", and the price was contrasted with the $35 million Yahoo!

paid for Flickr in 2005.[39]Mark Zuckerberg noted that Facebook was "committed to building and growing Instagram independently", in contrast to its past practices.[39] According to Wired, the deal netted Systrom $400 million based on his ownership stake in the business.[43] The exact purchase price was $300 million in cash and 23 million shares of stock.[44]

In November 2012, Instagram launched website profiles, allowing anyone to see users' feeds from their web browsers.

However, the website interface was limited in functionality, with notable omissions including the lack of a search bar, a news feed, and the ability to upload photos.[45] In February 2013, the website was updated to offer a news feed,.[46]

2014: Android update and Facebook Places

The Android app has received two major exclusive updates.

Instagram first day ipo

The first, introduced in March 2014, cut the size of the app by half and added significant improvements to performance and responsiveness on a wide variety of Android devices.[47][48]The Verge wrote that the development team had tested the app on devices not for sale in the United States, particularly low-end models like Samsung Galaxy Y, in an effort to improve the app for its userbase located outside the U.S.

Engineering manager Philip McAllister told The Verge that "More than 60 percent of our users are outside the US, and Android covers roughly half of total Instagram users".[49] The second update, introduced in April 2017, added an offline mode, in which content previously loaded in the news feed is available without an Internet connection, and users can comment, like, save media, and unfollow users, all of which will take effect once the user goes back online.

At the time of the announcement, it was reported that 80% of Instagram's 600 million users are located outside the U.S., and while the aforementioned functionality was live at announcement, Instagram also announced its intention to make more features available offline "in the following months", and that they were "exploring an iOS version".[50][51][52]

Since the app's launch it had used the Foursquare API technology to provide named location tagging.

In March 2014, Instagram started testing switching the technology to using Facebook Places.[53][54]

2015: Desktop redesign

In June 2015, the desktop website user interface was redesigned to become more flat and minimalistic, but with more screen space for each photo and to resemble the layout of Instagram's mobile website.[55][56][57] Furthermore, one row of pictures only has three instead of five photos to match the mobile layout.

The slideshow banner[58][59] on the top of profile pages, which simultaneously slide-showed seven picture tiles of pictures posted by the user, alternating at different times in a random order, has been removed.

In addition, the formerly angular profile pictures became circular.

2016: Interface redesign and Windows app

On May 11, 2016, Instagram revamped its design, adding a black-and-white flat design theme for the app's user interface, and a lesser skeuomorphistic, more abstract, "modern" and colorful icon.[60][61][62] Rumors of a redesign first started circulating in April, when The Verge received a screenshot from a tipster, but at the time, an Instagram spokesperson simply told the publication that it was only a concept.[63]

On December 6, 2016, Instagram introduced comment liking.

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However, unlike post likes, the user who posted a comment does not receive notifications about comment likes in their notification inbox. Uploaders can optionally decide to deactivate comments onto a post.[64][65][66]

In April 2016, Instagram released a Windows 10 Mobile app, after years of demand from Microsoft and the public to release an app for the platform.[67][68] The platform previously had a beta version of Instagram, first released on November 21, 2013 and also compatible with Windows Phone 8.[69][70][71] The new app added support for video (viewing and creating posts or stories, and viewing live streams), album posts and direct messages.[72] Similarly, an app for Windows 10 personal computers and tablets was released in October 2016.[73][74] In May, Instagram updated its mobile website to allow users to upload photos, and to add a "lightweight" version of the Explore tab.[75][76]

On April 30, 2019, the Windows 10 Mobile app was discontinued, though the mobile website remains available as a progressive web application with limited functionality.

The app also remains available on Windows 10 computers and tablets.

2018: Management changes

On September 24, 2018, Krieger and Systrom announced in a statement they would be stepping down from Instagram.[77][78] On October 1, 2018, it was announced that Adam Mosseri would be the new head of Instagram.[79][80]

2019: Feature changes, Reels

During Facebook F8, it was announced that Instagram would, beginning in Canada, pilot the removal of publicly-displayed "like" counts for content posted by other users.[81] Like counts would only be visible to the user who originally posted the content.

Instagram first day ipo

Mosseri stated that this was intended to have users "worry a little bit less about how many likes they're getting on Instagram and spend a bit more time connecting with the people that they care about."[82][83] It has been argued that low numbers of likes in relativity to others could contribute to a lower self-esteem in users.[83][81] The pilot began in May 2019, and was extended to 6 other markets in July.[83][84] The pilot was expanded worldwide in November 2019.[85] Also in July 2019, Instagram announced that it would implement new features designed to reduce harassment and negative comments on the service.[86]

In August 2019, Instagram also began to pilot the removal of the "Following" tab from the app, which had allowed users to view a feed of the likes and comments made by users they follow.

The change was made official in October, with head of product Vishal Shah stating that the feature was underused, and that some users were "surprised" when they realized their activity was being surfaced in this manner.[87][88]

In November 2019, it was reported that Instagram had begun to pilot a new video feature known as "Reels". It is similar in functionality to the Chinese video sharing service TikTok, with a focus on allowing users to record short videos set to pre-existing sound clips from other posts.[89]

Features and tools

Users can upload photographs and short videos, follow other users' feeds,[90] and geotag images with the name of a location.[91] Users can set their account as "private", thereby requiring that they approve any new follower requests.[92] Users can connect their Instagram account to other social networking sites, enabling them to share uploaded photos to those sites.[93] In September 2011, a new version of the app included new and live filters, instant tilt–shift, high-resolution photographs, optional borders, one-click rotation, and an updated icon.[94][95] Photos were initially restricted to a square, 1:1 aspect ratio; since August 2015, the app supports portrait and widescreen aspect ratios as well.[96][97][98] Users could formerly view a map of a user's geotagged photos.

The feature was removed in September 2016, citing low usage.[99][100]

Since December 2016, posts can be "saved" into a private area of the app.[101][102] The feature was updated in April 2017 to let users organize saved posts into named collections.[103][104] Users can also "archive" their posts in a private storage area, out of visibility for the public and other users.

The move was seen as a way to prevent users from deleting photos that don't garner a desired number of "likes" or are deemed boring, but also as a way to limit the "emergent behavior" of deleting photos, which deprives the service of content.[105][106] In August, Instagram announced that it would start organizing comments into threads, letting users more easily interact with replies.[107][108]

Since February 2017, up to ten pictures or videos can be included in a single post, with the content appearing as a swipeable carousel.[109][110] The feature originally limited photos to the square format, but received an update in August to enable portrait and landscape photos instead.[111][112]

In April 2018, Instagram launched its version of a portrait mode called "focus mode," which gently blurs the background of a photo or video while keeping the subject in focus when selected.[113] In November, Instagram began to support Alt text to add descriptions of photos for the visually impaired.

They are either generated automatically using object recognition (using existing Facebook technology), or manually specified by the uploader.[114]


In January 2011, Instagram introduced hashtags to help users discover both photos and each other.[115][116] Instagram encourages users to make tags both specific and relevant, rather than tagging generic words like "photo", to make photographs stand out and to attract like-minded Instagram users.[117]

Users on Instagram have created "trends" through hashtags.

Instagram first day ipo

The trends deemed the most popular on the platform often highlight a specific day of the week to post the material on. Examples of popular trends include #SelfieSunday, in which users post a photo of their faces on Sundays; #MotivationMonday, in which users post motivational photos on Mondays; #TransformationTuesday, in which users post photos highlighting differences from the past to the present; #WomanCrushWednesday, in which users post photos of women they have a romantic interest in or view favorably, as well as its #ManCrushMonday counterpart centered on men; and #ThrowbackThursday, in which users post a photo from their past, highlighting a particular moment.[118][119]

In December 2017, Instagram began to allow users to follow hashtags, which displays relevant highlights of the topic in their feeds.[120][121]


In June 2012, Instagram introduced "Explore", a tab inside the app that displays popular photos, photos taken at nearby locations, and search.[122] The tab was updated in June 2015 to feature trending tags and places, curated content, and the ability to search for locations.[123] In April 2016, Instagram added a "Videos You Might Like" channel to the tab,[124][125] followed by an "Events" channel in August, featuring videos from concerts, sports games, and other live events,[126][127] followed by the addition of Instagram Stories in October.[128][129] The tab was later expanded again in November 2016 after Instagram Live launched to display an algorithmically-curated page of the "best" Instagram Live videos currently airing.[130] In May 2017, Instagram once again updated the Explore tab to promote public Stories content from nearby places.[131]

Photographic filters

Instagram offers a number of photographic filters that users can apply to their images:

  • Normal: No filter applied.
  • 1977: The increased exposure with a red tint gives the photograph a rosy, brighter, faded look.
  • Amaro: Adds light to an image, with the focus on the center.[132]
  • Brannan: Increases contrast and exposure and adds a metallic tint.
  • Earlybird: Gives photographs an older look with a sepia tint and warm temperature.
  • Hefe: High contrast and saturation, with a similar effect to Lo-Fi but not quite as dramatic.
  • Hudson: Creates an "icy" illusion with heightened shadows, cool tint and dodged center.[133]
  • Inkwell: Direct shift to black and white – no extra editing.
  • Kelvin: Increases saturation and temperature to give it a radiant "glow".[134]
  • Lo-fi: Enriches color and adds strong shadows through the use of saturation and "warming" the temperature.
  • Mayfair: Applies a warm pink tone, subtle vignetting to brighten the photograph center and a thin black border.[135]
  • Nashville: Warms the temperature, lowers contrast and increases exposure to give a light "pink" tint – making it feel "nostalgic".
  • Rise: Adds a "glow" to the image, with softer lighting of the subject.
  • Sierra: Gives a faded, softer look.
  • Sutro: Burns photo edges, increases highlights and shadows dramatically with a focus on purple and brown colors.
  • Toaster: Ages the image by "burning" the center and adds a dramatic vignette.
  • Valencia: Fades the image by increasing exposure and warming the colors, to give it an antique feel.

  • Walden: Increases exposure and adds a yellow tint.
  • Willow: A monochromatic filter with subtle purple tones and a translucent white border.[136]
  • X-Pro II: Increases color vibrancy with a golden tint, high contrast and slight vignette added to the edges.
  • Slumber: Desaturates the image as well as adds haze for a retro, dreamy look – with an emphasis on blacks and blues.
  • Cream: Adds a creamy look that both warms and cools the image.
  • Ludwig: A slight hint of desaturation that also enhances light.
  • Aden: This filter gives a blue/green natural look.
  • Perpetua: Adding a pastel look, this filter is ideal for portraits.[137][138]
  • Clarendon: Intensifies shadows and brightens highlights.

    Originally released as a video-only filter.

  • Gingham: Washes photos out. Gives a yellowish tone when used on dark photos or a brighter, dreamy look when used on light photos.
  • Moon: Black and white version of Gingham, with slightly more intense shadows.
  • Stinson: Subtle filter that brightens an image, washing out the colors slightly.
  • Crema: Vintage filter that desaturates images.

    Instagram first day ipo

    Smooths and washes out skin tones.[139]

  • Lark: Desaturates reds while punching up blues and greens – brings landscapes to life.
  • Reyes: Gives photos a dusty, vintage look.
  • Juno: Tints cool tones green, makes warm tones pop and whites glow – for vibrant photos of people.[140]

In February 2012, Instagram added a "Lux" filter, an effect that "lightens shadows, darkens highlights and increases contrast".[141][142]

In December 2014, Slumber, Crema, Ludwig, Aden, and Perpetua were five new filters to be added to the Instagram filter family.[143]


Initially a purely photo-sharing service, Instagram incorporated 15-second video sharing in June 2013.[144][145] The addition was seen by some in the technology media as Facebook's attempt at competing with then-popular video-sharing application Vine.[146][147] In August 2015, Instagram added support for widescreen videos.[148][149] In March 2016, Instagram increased the 15-second video limit to 60 seconds.[150][151] Albums were introduced in February 2017, which allow up to 10 minutes of video to be shared in one post.[109][110][152]


Main article: IGTV

IGTV is a vertical video application launched by Instagram[153] in June 2018.

Basic functionality is also available within the Instagram app and website. IGTV allows uploads of up to 10 minutes in length with a file size of up to 650 MB, with verified and popular users allowed to upload videos of up to 60 minutes in length with a file size of up to 5.4 GB.[154] The app automatically begins playing videos as soon as it is launched, which CEO Kevin Systrom contrasted to video hosts where one must first locate a video.[155][156][157]

Instagram Direct

In December 2013, Instagram announced Instagram Direct, a feature that lets users interact through private messaging.

Users who follow each other can send private messages with photos and videos, in contrast to the public-only requirement that was previously in place.

Instagram first day ipo

When users receive a private message from someone they don't follow, the message is marked as pending and the user must accept to see it. Users can send a photo to a maximum of 15 people.[158][159][160] The feature received a major update in September 2015, adding conversation threading and making it possible for users to share locations, hashtag pages, and profiles through private messages directly from the news feed.

Additionally, users can now reply to private messages with text, emoji or by clicking on a heart icon. A camera inside Direct lets users take a photo and send it to the recipient without leaving the conversation.[161][162][163] A new update in November 2016 let users make their private messages "disappear" after being viewed by the recipient, with the sender receiving a notification if the recipient takes a screenshot.[164][165] In April 2017, Instagram redesigned Direct to combine all private messages, both permanent and ephemeral, into the same message threads.[166][167][168] In May, Instagram made it possible to send website links in messages, and also added support for sending photos in their original portrait or landscape orientation without cropping.[169][170]

Instagram Stories

In August 2016, Instagram launched Instagram Stories, a feature that allows users to take photos, add effects and layers, and add them to their Instagram story.

Images uploaded to a user's story expire after 24 hours. The media noted the feature's similarities to Snapchat.[171][172] In response to criticism that it copied functionality from Snapchat, CEO Kevin Systrom told Recode that "Day One: Instagram was a combination of Hipstamatic, Twitter [and] some stuff from Facebook like the 'Like' button.

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You can trace the roots of every feature anyone has in their app, somewhere in the history of technology". Although Systrom acknowledged the criticism as "fair", Recode wrote that "he likened the two social apps' common features to the auto industry: Multiple car companies can coexist, with enough differences among them that they serve different consumer audiences".

Systrom further stated that "When we adopted [Stories], we decided that one of the really annoying things about the format is that it just kept going and you couldn't pause it to look at something, you couldn't rewind. We did all that, we implemented that." He also told the publication that Snapchat "didn't have filters, originally.

The Day of the IPO

They adopted filters because Instagram had filters and a lot of others were trying to adopt filters as well."[173][174]

In November, Instagram added live video functionality to Instagram Stories, allowing users to broadcast themselves live, with the video disappearing immediately after ending.[175][130]

In January 2017, Instagram launched skippable ads, where five-second photo and 15-second video ads appear in-between different stories.[176][177]

In April 2017, Instagram Stories incorporated augmented reality stickers, a "clone" of Snapchat's functionality.[178][179][180]

In May 2017, Instagram expanded the augmented reality sticker feature to support face filters, letting users add specific visual features onto their faces.[181][182]

Later in May, TechCrunch reported about tests of a Location Stories feature in Instagram Stories, where public Stories content at a certain location are compiled and displayed on a business, landmark or place's Instagram page.[183] A few days later, Instagram announced "Story Search", in which users can search for geographic locations or hashtags and the app displays relevant public Stories content featuring the search term.[131][184]

In June 2017, Instagram revised its live-video functionality to allow users to add their live broadcast to their story for availability in the next 24 hours, or discard the broadcast immediately.[185] In July, Instagram started allowing users to respond to Stories content by sending photos and videos, complete with Instagram effects such as filters, stickers, and hashtags.[186][187]

Stories were made available for viewing on Instagram's mobile and desktop websites in late August 2017.[188][189]

On December 5, 2017, Instagram introduced “Story Highlights”,[190] also known as “Permanent Stories”, which are similar to Instagram Stories, but don't expire.

They appear as circles below the profile picture and biography, and are accessible from the desktop website as well.

In June 2018, the daily active story users of Instagram had reached 400 million users, and monthly active users had reached to 1 billion active users.[191]


Following Emily White's appointment to the position of Director of Business Operations in April 2013,[192][193] she stated in an interview with The Wall Street Journal in September 2013 that the company should be ready to begin selling advertising by September 2014 as a way to generate business from a popular entity that had not yet created profit for its parent company.[194] White left Instagram, however, in December 2013, to join Snapchat.[195][196] In August 2014, James Quarles was hired as Instagram's Global Head of Business and Brand Development, a new position within the company focused on overseeing advertisement and sales efforts while developing new "monetization products", according to a spokesperson.[197]

In October 2013, Instagram began its monetization efforts, announcing that, "over the next couple of months", video and image ads would start appearing in between users' photos in the news feed for users in the United States.[198][199] A sample ad from Instagram, featuring the text "Sponsored" at the top right of the image, was the first to be released, with a limited number of brands being allowed to advertise in the early stages.[200][201] Image advertisements officially started appearing in feeds starting November 1, 2013,[202][203] followed by video ads on October 30, 2014.[204][205] In June 2014, Instagram announced the then-upcoming rollout of ads in the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia, planned for "later this year".[206] The same sample ad from Instagram's launch in the U.S.

was shown to users in the United Kingdom in September 2014, with ads rolling out "over the coming weeks".[207]

In March 2015, it announced that it would allow advertisers to buy "carousel ads", a way for brands to upload up to five images that users can swipe through, with options at the end for additional content or a visit to the brand's website.[208][209] Following strong performance of the ad format, Instagram opened up a self-service feature for brands to buy carousel ads the following October,[210][211] and in March 2016, it started allowing video in carousel ads.[212]

In May 2016, Instagram announced the launch of new tools for business accounts, including new business profiles, Insights analytics and the ability to turn posts into ads directly from the Instagram app itself.

However, to be eligible for the tools, businesses had to have a Facebook Page, with Quarles stating: "In doing that, it gives us the payment credentials, as well as if they want to prepopulate some of the information like their street address, the phone number, and the website".[213] The Instagram Insights panel, which lets businesses see their top posts, reach, impressions and engagement surrounding their posts as well as user demographics,[213] was rolled out first to the United States, Australia, and New Zealand, with the rest of the world "by the end of the year".[214][213][215]

In February 2016, Instagram announced that it had 200,000 advertisers on the platform.[216] This increased to 500,000 active advertisers in September 2016,[217] and one million in March 2017.[218][219]

In November 2018, Instagram added the ability for posts by business accounts to contain tagged products, with the ability for users to be linked directly to a purchase page, and to save them to a "shopping list" in their saved collections.

[220] The following April, Instagram expanded upon this feature by adding "Checkout on Instagram", which allows merchants to conduct e-commerce purchases for such products directly through the Instagram app [221]

Stand-alone apps

Instagram has developed and released three stand-alone apps with specialized functionality. In July 2014, it released Bolt, a messaging app where users click on a friend's profile photo to quickly send an image, with the content disappearing after being seen.[222][223] It was followed by the release of Hyperlapse in August, an iOS-exclusive app that uses "clever algorithm processing" to create tracking shots and fast time-lapse videos.[224][225] Microsoft launched a Hyperlapse app for Android and Windows in May 2015, but there has been no official Hyperlapse app from Instagram for either of these platforms to date.[226] In October 2015, it released Boomerang, a video app that combines photos into short, one-second videos that play back-and-forth in a loop.[227][228]

Third-party services

The popularity of Instagram has led to a variety of third-party services designed to integrate with it, including services for creating content to post on the service and generating content from Instagram photos (including physical print-outs), analytics, and alternative clients for platforms with insufficient or no official support from Instagram (such as in the past, iPads).[229][230]

In November 2015, Instagram announced that effective June 1, 2016, it would end "feed" API access to its platform in order to "maintain control for the community and provide a clear roadmap for developers " and "set up a more sustainable environment built around authentic experiences on the platform", including those oriented towards content creation, publishers, and advertisers.

It was reported that these changes were primarily intended to discourage third-party clients replicating the entire Instagram experience (due to increasing monetization of the service), and security reasons (such as preventing abuse by automated click farms, and hijacking of accounts).

In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Instagram began to impose further restrictions on its API in 2018.[230][231][232]

User characteristics and behavior


See also: List of most-followed Instagram accounts

Following the release in October, Instagram had one million registered users in December 2010.[233][234] In June 2011, it announced that it had 5 million users,[235] which increased to 10 million in September.[236][237] This growth continued to 30 million users in April 2012,[236][31] 80 million in July 2012,[238][239] 100 million in February 2013,[240][241] 130 million in June 2013,[242] 150 million in September 2013,[243][244] 300 million in December 2014,[245][246] 400 million in September 2015,[247][248] 500 million in June 2016,[249][250] 600 million in December 2016,[251][252] 700 million in April 2017,[253][254] and 800 million in September 2017.[255][256]

In October 2016, Instagram Stories reached 100 million active users, two months after launch.[257][258] This increased to 150 million in January 2017,[176][177] 200 million in April, surpassing Snapchat's user growth,[178][179][180] and 250 million active users in June 2017.[259][185]

In April 2017, Instagram Direct had 375 million monthly users.[166][167][168]

In June 2011, Instagram passed 100 million photos uploaded to the service.[260][261] This grew to 150 million in August 2011,[262][263] and by June 2013, there were over 16 billion photos on the service.[242] In October 2015, there existed over 40 billion photos.[264]


Instagram's users are divided equally with 50% iPhone owners and 50% Android owners.

While Instagram has a neutral gender-bias format, 68% of Instagram users are female while 32% are male.

Starting a Company on Instagram Challenge - Day 1

Instagram's geographical use is shown to favor urban areas as 17% of US adults who live in urban areas use Instagram while only 11% of adults in suburban and rural areas do so. While Instagram may appear to be one of the most widely used sites for photo sharing, only 7% of daily photo uploads, among the top four photo-sharing platforms, come from Instagram.

Instagram has been proven to attract the younger generation with 90% of the 150 million users under the age of 35.

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From June 2012 to June 2013, Instagram approximately doubled their number of users. As regards income, 15% of US Internet users who make less than $30,000 per year use Instagram, while 14% of those making $30,000 to $50,000, and 12% of users who make more than $50,000 per year do so.[265] With respect to the education demographic, respondents with some college education proved to be the most active on Instagram with 23%.

Following behind, college graduates consist of 18% and users with a high school diploma or less make up 15%.

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Among these Instagram users, 24% say they use the app several times a day.[266]

User behavior

Ongoing research continues to explore how media content on the platform affects user engagement. Past research has found that media which show peoples' faces receive more 'likes' and comments and that using filters that increase warmth, exposure, and contrast also boosts engagement.[267] Users are more likely to engage with images that depict fewer individuals compared to groups and also are more likely to engage with content that has not been watermarked, as they view this content as less original and reliable compared to user-generated content.[268] Recently Instagram has come up with an option for users to apply for verified account badge, however this does not guarantee every user who applies will get the verified blue tick.[269]

The motives for using Instagram among young people are mainly to look at posts, particularly for the sake of social interactions and recreation.

In contrast, the level of agreement expressed in creating Instagram posts was lower, which demonstrates that Instagram's emphasis on visual communication is widely accepted by young people in social communication.[270]



Instagram was the runner-up for "Best Mobile App" at the 2010 TechCrunch Crunchies in January 2011.[271] In May 2011, Fast Company listed CEO Kevin Systrom at number 66 in "The 100 Most Creative People in Business in 2011".[272] In June 2011, Inc. included co-founders Systrom and Krieger in its 2011 "30 Under 30" list.[273]

Instagram won "Best Locally Made App" in the SF Weekly Web Awards in September 2011.[274]7x7Magazine's September 2011 issue featured Systrom and Krieger on the cover of their "The Hot 20 2011" issue.[275] In December 2011, Apple Inc.

named Instagram the "App of the Year" for 2011.[276] In 2015, Instagram was named No. 1 by Mashable on its list of "The 100 best iPhone apps of all time," noting Instagram as "one of the most influential social networks in the world."[277] Instagram was listed among Time's "50 Best Android Applications for 2013" list.[278]

Mental health

In May 2017, a survey conducted by United Kingdom's Royal Society for Public Health, featuring 1,479 people aged 14–24, asking them to rate social media platforms depending on anxiety, depression, loneliness, bullying and body image, concluded that Instagram was "worst for young mental health".

Some have suggested it may contribute to digital dependence, whist this same survey noticed its positive effects, including self expression, self identity, and community building.

In response to the survey, Instagram stated that "Keeping Instagram a safe and supportive place for young people was a top priority".[279][280] The company will filter out the reviews accounts. If some of the accounts violate Instagram's community guidelines, it will take action, which could include banning them.[281]

In 2017, researchers from Harvard University and University of Vermont demonstrated a machine learning tool that successfully outperformed general practitioners' diagnostic success rate for depression.

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The tool used color analysis, metadata components, and face-detection of users' feeds.[282]

Throughout 2019, Instagram began to test the hiding of like counts for posts made by pth

In response to abusive and negative comments on users' photos, Instagram has made efforts to give users more control over their posts and accompanying comments field. In July 2016, it announced that users would be able to turn off comments for their posts, as well as control the language used in comments by inputting words they consider offensive, which will ban applicable comments from showing up.[283][284] After the July 2016 announcement, the ability to ban specific words began rolling out early August to celebrities,[285] followed by regular users in September.[286] In December, the company began rolling out the abilities for users to turn off the comments and, for private accounts, remove followers.[287][288]

In September 2017, the company announced that public users would be able to limit who can comment on their content, such as only their followers or people they follow.

At the same time, it updated its automated comment filter to support additional languages.[289][290]

In June 2017, Instagram announced that it would automatically attempt to filter offensive, harassing, and "spammy" comments by default. The system is built using a Facebook-developed deep learning algorithm known as DeepText (first implemented on the social network to detect spam comments), which utilizes natural-language processing techniques, and can also filter by user-specified keywords.[291][292][293]

In July 2019, the service announced that it would introduce a system to proactively detect problematic comments and encourage the user to reconsider their comment, as well as allowing users the ability to "restrict" others' abilities to communicate with them, citing that younger users felt the existing block system was too much of an escalation.[86]


On August 9, 2012, English musician Ellie Goulding released a new music video for her song "Anything Could Happen." The video only contained fan-submitted Instagram photographs that used various filters to represent words or lyrics from the song, and over 1,200 different photographs were submitted.[294]

Censorship and restricted content

According to a Facebook spokesperson,on 11 January 2020, Instagram and its parent company Facebook are picking up posts "that voice support for slain Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani to comply with US sanctions".[295]

Illicit drugs

Instagram has been the subject of criticism due to users publishing images of drugs they are selling on the platform.

In 2013, the BBC

An original photograph (left) is automatically cropped to a square by Instagram, and has a filter added at the selection of the user (right).
A photo collage of an unprocessed image (top left) modified with the 16 different Instagram filters available in 2011
The Instagram app, running on the Android operating system

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