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Facestagram: Reactions from France

Written by: Claire Goyat April 13, 2012  

Only seven days after the launch of the Android version of Instagram, the hippest mobile app for photo sharing continues to draw attention. On the 9th April Mark Zuckerberg announced the purchase of Instagram by Facebook for  $1 Billion.

At first sight this phenomenal amount may seem unjustified, yet it holds numerous benefits for THE social network. The purchase is first and foremost a clear strategic positioning for Facebook against competitors such as Google or Twitter: it enables Facebook to become a leader in the “social photo” market.

With photo sharing being one of the key Facebook activities, Instagram stands as a real strategic play for Facebook. It can now protect itself from potential competitors and position itself as the undisputed leader of online photo sharing.

The second significant part of the deal is the reinforcement of Facebook’s presence on mobile. (See here for a related piece from Presse Citron.) Facebook has struggled to impose its native app on mobile platforms and will benefit from the success of Instagram – an application built for and thriving on smartphones.

How else will Facebook benefit? This is where the monetization of Instagram comes into play. Announcing the Android version release a few days before the Facebook announcement may not be a trivial detail – and despite Zuckerberg’s claims that they do not intend to amend the way Instagram works, there is no doubt that user targeted adverts will end up on the application.

Meantime, the purchase has stirred various concerns amongst Instagram users. Thousands have threatened they will unsubscribe from the app. There have also been negative reactions about personal data protection, the worry of being drowned by Facebook status updates and a concern that the beloved little startup app will simply be converted into a mass market product. In amongst this, many blogs have already proposed alternatives to Instagram with a selection of different mobile photo sharing apps.


In spite of the all the noise we feel Instagram still has its best days ahead. The purchase announcement has raised broader interest and many more people have dashed to download and use it – Instagram became the top app on the Apple App store on 11th April.

More Reactions:

Instagram soars to #1 on App store, is instant hit on Google Play – Washington Post

L’incroyable Jackpot des fondateurs d’Instagram – Le Figaro

Avec Instagram, Facebook pense à son avenir – BMF Business

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