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Quick review: Instagram for Android!

April 4, 2012

After what seemed to be an endless wait, Instagram for Android is finally here! The app was officially announced last month at SXSW, but only became available in Google Play yesterday, starting off a download craze that propelled the app almost instantly to the top of the download charts. Those of you who have been envious on the vintage looking images found in countless Facebook and Twitter posts (all uploaded by iOS users) can now rejoice.

According to the celebratory stats published today, Instagram has reached over 30 million registered users, which make it the largest mobile-based social network in the world. The same figures show that Instagram for Android has been downloaded over a million times in less than 24 hours, and that 430,000 people signed up to receive the announcement of its release.

Without doubt, Instagram is going to be a big hit on Android. I’ve used it a few times now and I am thoroughly enjoying it! Check out my quick review to find out what the fuss is all about.
So lets take a look at the application itself. Happily, if you haven’t got time to load up Instagram to take a photo, you can snap it quickly with the camera application and then import the image into Instagram later. If you take an image within Instagram, you are presented with your default camera application, although you can enable a more artsy viewfinder in Instagram’s settings.

Once you’ve got an image captured, the first step is to crop it. Sadly, and I have no idea why this is, Instagram will only let you play around with 1:1 images. Once you’ve cropped it, you can add a visual filter from the app’s collection. Disappointingly, there are only 17 to choose from, however, in my opinion (I know that many disagree) they all make an image appear far more artistic and captivating to look at. After you apply your filter of choice, you can toggle a border, a brightness/glare effect, and rotate the image around at 0, 90, 180, or 270′.

Now, just choose a caption, whether you want to geotag your post, which social networks you would like to upload the image to, and, that’s it – you’ve uploaded your first Instagram image! I love how easy this is to accomplish, sharing an image to multiple social networks takes only moments. Overall, I am impressed; you can take an image, apply some effects, and upload to your social network profiles in under a minute.

The Android application also makes it easy to browse popular images across Instagram, uploaded by both Android and iOS devices. Definitely worth a look if you ever need to pass some time. It’s easy enough to get to, just tap the star icon at the bottom of your screen.

Oh, and the notification feature is well made too. I was delighted to get a discrete notification saying that my post has been liked!

Altogether, I think Instagram is a lovely addition to Android, and will delight all the users who have been looking forward to it. It could do with a few more effects and the ability to work in landscape mode, but otherwise, well done Instagram! 9/10!

You can go right ahead and download the application from Google Play.

Share your Instagram images with us and other Android Authority readers by pasting links below. How much of an artistic image can you create using a smartphone?

P.S. If you want a quick laugh, take a look at how outraged some iPhone users have become now that we have Instagram.

Have you tried it out yet? Any thoughts?