Neither Facebook nor Twitter. Currently the social network that is growing the most in terms of the number of active users is Instagram . The key statistic to observe the current trend is as follows: in the last semester, Instagram increased its number of active users by 23% , while Twitter only managed to grow 2% and Facebook registered a 3% drop, according to a report prepared by the GlobalWebIndex agency.
Of course, it is true that in these figures Instagram benefits from practically zero, and therefore, with a margin of growth much higher than those applications or networks already established and consolidated, with far fewer options to get new users.
Social networks and the audiovisual world are two essential pillars of the Internet today. The union of these two trends, then, ensures immediate success. This is the case of Instagram, a social network that is presented as a free application and that allows you to take photographs, modify them with special effects (the filters, which we will talk about later) and share them, either on Instagram itself or in others. social networks like Facebook, Twitter or Flickr.
Thus, the fundamental basis of this social network is photography , the image. The application takes square photos, similar to those taken by Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid cameras in the 1960s. For some time now, it has also been able to make videos (with a maximum duration of 15 seconds).
Instagram was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger and was launched in October 2010, originally designed for iPhones. It wasn’t until early April 2012 that an Android version was released. The app quickly gained popularity, hence Mark Zuckerberg, the creator of Facebook , did not hesitate to buy it in April 2012 for $ 1 billion. This fact gave it one last push to consolidate it.
Instagram allows us to follow other users and to follow us, whether for familiarity, affinity or admiration, so that we can follow both our closest friends and celebrities in fashion, film, music, etc. What makes Instagram something unique, however, is the possibility of uploading images from our smartphone quickly and directly , retouched with its wide range of filters, without using different applications.
Currently, it has 19 filters , each with its characteristics and names ( Earlybird, Amaro, X-Pro II, Mayfair …), but they all provide an unmistakable and highly visual aesthetic to each image. Choosing the filter for your photo is the most fun but also the most calculated task, since each of them brings a different and special touch to each shot. Apart from choosing a filter, we can also modify the edges, touch up the contrast or blur part of the image.
Also, when we hang the photograph, we can include some hashtags or tags. Thanks to the tags, which fulfill the exact same function as on Twitter (the symbol “#” followed by the word in question) we will be able to catalog the snapshot with a specific theme so that all those interested in the subject can find it and make comments.
To start using Instagram we must first download the application from its website or from the application stores, both Android and iOS . When we have it installed on our mobile device, we must register and create a username. Once inside the system, we can configure our profile , with a mini biography that tells users who we are or what we like and adding a photo that identifies us.
From here, we can start squeezing the application. By clicking on the central button of the menu we will activate the camera on the mobile and we will be able to perform 3 actions : take a photo, select one from our gallery that we have already taken or make a video. In the case of choosing an image, the most typical function, we can already choose the corresponding filter and, later, add a brief description (where we will also put the hashtags ) as a caption. Finally, we will share the photo on Instagram’s own social network and, if we want, also on other networks such as Twitter or Facebook.
According to the social network itself, to this day Instagram already has practically 200 million active users throughout the planet, and doubled its number of users from one year to the next. Powered by the new habits of a society that is committed to the visual world and content in photo and video, the photographic application rises like foam. Despite the fact that Facebook continues to maintain its position as the largest social network in the world, Instagram is taking giant steps to, one day not too distant, come to shadow it.