Instagram and Facebook stepping up fight against spammers

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 16, 2014

Facebook-owned Instagram has responded to complaints from users who have noticed a sharp increase in the number of fake accounts and followers that are spamming them. If you fire up Instagram’s free iPhone app and hit the Following button, you’ll see a message about changes in followers.

“We’ve removed deactivated and spam accounts,” the message reads. “Your list of followers and people you follow may have changed” as a result.

This is a welcomed albeit way overdue change.

I’ve been a frequent victim of spammers on Instagram. Some of these guys are really smart in how they get on your Following list with the ultimate goal of populating your feed with spammy posts often disguised as so-called viral images and videos… Read More

 

Instagram reportedly testing location integration with Facebook Places

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 25, 2014

Facebook-owned Instagram has traditionally relied on Foursquare for its vast database of points of interest.

For example, upon uploading a photograph Instagram gives you an option of choosing a location where the image was taken using its Foursquare integration, simply by tapping a ‘Name This Location’ button.

Post acquisition, however, things have become a little weird.

Facebook has long been maintaining its own location database, Facebook Places. Two years into the acquisition, Instagram has now started using Facebook Places as its mapping service, at least for a subset of its users.

Despite this (expected) change, more than the 150 million Instagram fans can continue to share their check-ins to Foursquare from Instagram… Read More

 

Instagram for iPhone introduces Lux filter slider

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 11, 2014

Facebook-owned Instagram has introduced the popular Lux filter via a free update back in February 2012. Lux is admittedly a nice new way to enhance your photos, but there’s just one slight problem: Instagram’s one-touch implementation leaves a lot to be desired.

For starters, the effect has no options to fiddle with. For those unaware of Lux, it reduces overexposure and uses sharpening and fill light tweaks to make your shots warmer and people prettier.

It’s quite handy in low-light and low-contrast situations, even more so if you take lots of selfies using the iPhone’s sub-par front-facing camera. Realizing folks need more control over Lux, Instagram has updated its free iPhone app with a custom Lux slider… Read More

 

Instagram to pester us with more ads as it signs major $100M deal

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 10, 2014

Facebook-owned Instagram is about to monetize its more than 150 million active users in a big way, by continuing to pester them with a growing number of really expensive photo and video ads. Not that fans of the photo and video-sharing service will necessarily approve of the move, but Instagram has now signed its first major deal, reports AdAge.

Come on, you knew this was coming: first ads began showing up on Instagram back in November 2013.

That being said, today’s announcement is on an entirely different level as the people of Instagram have managed to sign a lucrative deal with an ad agency worth a cool $100 million. According to people familiar with the matter, the team is now rolling out a paid advertising program with a year-long commitment from Omnicom to spend north of $100 million to advertise for its clients on Instagram… Read More

 

Wallgram lets you create parallax wallpapers from Instagram pictures

By Lory Gil on Jan 31, 2014

Ever since Apple updated its mobile operating system to iOS 7, I’ve both loved and hated the parallax effect. I love having moving backgrounds via the dynamic wallpaper. I love having images that appear to move with me. However, I hate that the technology has broken my ability to use my own photos without needing some third party app.

Wallgram is one of those third party apps that make it possible for you to use your own pictures as wallpaper while maintaining the cool parallax feature. Plus, you can use images from Instagram… Read More

 

Flow is a beautiful Instagram client for iPad

By Lory Gil on Dec 19, 2013

I use my iPad for practically everything digital. When I’m testing apps, if they are universal, chances are I’ll test them on my iPad first. I just like the larger sized screen. One app that is sorely lacking in iPad optimization is Instagram. The company that launched a billion selfies does not consider the iPad fit for consumption. So, the world is relegated to third-party clients.

Flow for Instagram is, as far as I know, the first Instagram-related iPad app that has been designed from the top-down with iOS 7 in mind. Frankly, it looks a lot better than the official iPhone app… Read More

 

These are the most Instagrammed cities and locations of 2013

By Sébastien Page on Dec 17, 2013

The end of the year is a good time to look back on the year that went by. During that time, we at iDB usually post our favorite apps, Apple shares the most popular apps in the App Store, Google reveals the most searched words on its search engine, and Instagram exposes the most Instagrammed places of 2013.

The list is divided into two sections: the most Instagrammed locations and the most Instagrammed cities of 2013… Read More

 

Instagram Direct announced: limit photos and videos to select groups

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 12, 2013

iPhone photography fans, rejoice! Facebook-owned Instagram is holding its Share a Moment media event in Midtown Manhattan, New York City and co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom has just taken the wraps off Instagram Direct, a new feature designed to make it easy to limit specific photos and videos to select groups of friends.

The capability is available now through Instagram’s just-updated free iPhone app. As for Instagram metrics, Systrom said Instagram grew from 80 million users at the beginning of 2013 to 150 million users worldwide, with half of Instagram’s users accessing the service on a daily basis… Read More

 

Instagram issues invites for December 12 ‘share a moment’ media event

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 5, 2013

Facebook-owned Instagram is hosting a special media event next Thursday, a week from today. The photography service has unusually opted to send out invites via FedEx, not email. The invitation graphics does not seem to allude to any specific new feature introduction.

The all-white background is adorned with the Instagram logo and a short message which invites select members of the press to “share a moment” on December 12 in Midtown Manhattan, New York City, at 10am EST / 7am Pacific Time. That being said, we have a pretty good idea what Instagram might unveil come next Thursday… Read More

 

An Instagram shortfilm: possibly the coolest video you’ll see this month

By Sébastien Page on Nov 28, 2013

French Art Director Thomas Jullien painstakingly picked 852 Instagram photos that he put together in this amazing video montage. Okay, it might not be the coolest video you’ll see this month, but it should at least deserve the “coolest video of the week” award.

 

Rumor: Instagram to get private messaging feature

By Sébastien Page on Nov 22, 2013

An interesting piece of news coming from Om Malik:

Well-placed sources tell us that the company is gearing up to launch new private messaging features inside its still red-hot photo and video sharing service. It is also experimenting with the idea of group messaging, our source tells us. The new features are likely to find home in the next version of Instagram, which is expected before end of the year. An Instagram spokesperson (not surprisingly) declined to comment.

So far, the only way you can communicate with an Instagram user is by leaving a comment on one of his photos, which is everything but practical. Private messaging sounds like a natural and useful evolution of the service.

As an Instagram user, would you welcome this new feature?

 

And so it begins: first ads begin showing up on Instagram

By Cody Lee on Nov 1, 2013

Instagram officially launched its advertising platform today, putting an end to its 3+ year-long ad-free streak. A ‘sponsored post’ from upscale fashion brand Michael Kors has begun appearing in user timelines.

But it’s not like we didn’t know this was coming. The launch comes just a week after the social network offered up a preview of what ads were going to look like on Instagram, and after months of several warnings… Read More

 

What ads on Instagram will look like

By Sébastien Page on Oct 24, 2013

Anyone with a bit good common sense has probably been expected ads to come to Instagram for a long time, but it wasn’t until about a month ago that it was officially confirmed, and even explained shortly after on the company’s blog.

Today, Instagram took to their blog again to give us an idea of how ads will look like and what we’ll be able to do about them… Read More

 

Vidstitch Pro: create and share your photo + video collages on Instagram

By Lory Gil on Oct 21, 2013

Instagram is the biggest social networking sight for photography since Flickr, and it is gaining in popularity every day. Third-party developers are always looking for ways to allow Instagram users to make their pictures and videos more interesting.

Vidstitch Pro for Instagram lets you combine photos and videos onto a single collage so you can share your memories with others, moving or not… Read More

 

Square Video review: create Instagram videos without square cropping

By Lory Gil on Oct 17, 2013

Instagram is a joy for some and an irritation for others. One common complaint about the photography-based social networking site and third-party photo editing apps that support it is the 1:1 ratio. While it makes Instagram images and videos iconic, it makes some photography fans nuts.

Square Video makes it possible for you to upload videos to Instagram using wide screen and portrait ratios so you can share your clips the way they looked when you recorded them… Read More

 

Following spam attack, Instagram ignores requests to fix broken features [updated]

By Sébastien Page on Oct 16, 2013

Do you remember the Instagram smoothie spam attack that happened a few months ago? For those of you that are not aware of the situation, let me give you a brief history. On July 27 of this year, many users found out their account had been hacked into, and pictures of smoothies and juices with a link to some scam site disguised as the BBC were posted from those hacked accounts

Although Instagram never actually explained what happened that day, the company quickly took “actions to secure the accounts involved, and the posted photos are being deleted.”

I was one of these people affected by the attack. I actually noticed my account had been hacked well before Instagram reacted. I did all I could do at the time, which was changing my password and making sure my account was not tied to any third party applications.

Since that day, I was never able to use Instagram to its full capabilities, and although I have emailed support several times clearly explaining my issue, I never heard back from them… Read More

 

11 tips to get more Instagram followers

By Emil Pakarklis on Oct 13, 2013

Let’s face it. Instagram is only fun if other people are following you. However, when most of us first sign up for Instagram, hardly anyone is following us. In this article you’re going to learn some simple and ethical techniques to build a following on Instagram.

There’s a lot of demand for Instagram followers, and different scams and spammy techniques have been created as a consequence. Needless to say, these techniques don’t work (and Instagram will likely delete your account if you use them), so this article only focuses on legitimate ways to get more Instagram followersRead More

 

Instagram quietly removes option to disable video autoplay

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 11, 2013

Late last month, Facebook-owned Instagram finally received its somewhat dull iOS 7-inspired update. I say dull because the redesign feels a tad rushed out and a bit rough around the edges. More importantly, not many people have noticed that yesterday’s minor maintenance update has killed off the tremendously useful video auto-play toggle.

Although iTunes release notes for Instagram 4.2.2 innocently list only “bug fixes and performance improvements,” in reality the new build has stealthily removed the useful Instagram > Settings > Auto-Play Videos switch.

This may not seem like a big deal, but consider for a moment the fact that the vast majority of iPhoneography fans turn to Instagram to enjoy beautiful photos.

Conversely, not many people give a heck about video on Instagram. Instagram disappointedly has never provided an option to block all video content from a user’s feed so you don’t need me to tell you that enforcing auto-play on videos isn’t really helping anyone but Instagram itself… Read More

 

Flipagram review: make interesting video slideshows out of Instagram and camera roll photos

By Lory Gil on Oct 10, 2013

Who would have ever thought there would come a day when looking at someone’s vacation slideshow would actually be interesting and fun. Thanks to mobile technology, and the advent of digital filter effects, we are able to turn even the most mundane images into works of art.

Flipagram is a photo and video app that takes your pictures, sets them to music, and makes it simple to publish your newly created slideshows to Instagram, Facebook, and more… Read More

 

Instagram will introduce photo and video ads in the next couple months

By Sébastien Page on Oct 3, 2013

For those who’ve been following Instagram for a while, it will hardly come as a surprise that the company today announced it will start delivering ads into the feed of US users in the next couple of months.

Instagram, which was acquired by Facebook over a year ago, has yet to turn a profit. This new decision to start displaying ads on mobile devices might exactly be what the company needs to become profitable, even if it means alienating a few users in the process… Read More

 
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