Posts tagged “Instagram

Your Guide to Instagram Carousel

In the latest update to Instagram, users are now finally able to upload multiple photos and or videos (up to ten) into one post, this is called carousel.  Let’s look at the good.  Not only can this help streamline your timeline of annoying friends, who like to flood your timeline and bombard you with post after post, it also gives you a solid view that will consolidate those multi posts.  However, this adds yet another gesture into Instagram’s once simple mobile application.
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Screenshot of the new carousel feature in Instagram.

When clicking the plus sign now, you simply click the “Select Multiple” option and grab all of the media you want. Simple, concise and easy.  How can you add this into your Instagram workflow?  Here’s a few scenarios that pass: going on a trip and you’ve captured the best photos of “insert museum here”, you’ve went to a sporting event the list goes on.  Here is how the carousel should NOT be used: “I’ve taken 4 shots of this thing and I don’t know which one is best….. “
No, please don’t.  This will make your followers hate you probably more than they already do.
TLDR: Instagram’s new carousel is a value add than can easily be killed by those who trash it and exemplified by those that use it in a more artistic manner.

Instagram update brings STORIES!

I really hope that the Facebook team at least asked Snapchat to borrow their idea..  Probably not.  In fact, it’s nothing like that, it’s a great idea that Instagram is implementing in a very traditional manner with their own unique spin.  In addition, Snapchat is an atrocious mobile application that seemingly runs quite well on iOS; however, on Android the app experience is abysmal and is a shell of it’s iOS counterpart, partially in part because of the Snapchat team itself.
Instagram Stories is rolling out to users now. Snapchat beware, the big dogs are here to play.

Instagram Stories is rolling out to users now. Snapchat beware, the big dogs are here to play.

What does this give Instagram?
This update officially makes Instagram the “one stop shop” for visual media.  Photos, short videos and now stories that are a compilation of your last 24 hours that can be shared with all of your followers or just a core group.  Instagram is already a well-liked app that’s available on both iOS and Android and it is equally consistent on both.  TechCrunch is calling the feature “..Snapchat for adults..”, which I can agree.  Instagram has a refined and polished UI while Snapchat is an utter mess.   [See TechCrunch’s full story here with a complete breakdown listing the similarities and differences here.]  Snapchat has seemed like a children’s playground since it’s inception.
What does this take away from Snapchat?
Is this the nail in the coffin for Snapchat?  From bad video quality on Android, to a horrible mess with RAM on the platform, this could make many users shift their content from one platform to another.
Bottom line:  Instagram has made a good move here while still keeping traditional posts front and center, they’ve added stories of people that you interact most to the top of the app.  This update will likely get an entire new audience into the foray of creating and sharing their photo/video journal to the world due in part to the maturity and clean look of the UI.  There are simply many people (myself included) who stayed far, far away from Snapchat and now that Instagram has introduced it’s own — it’s game time.
Creating your very own story is just one swipe away.

Is Online Privacy a Thing of the Past?

With our data being pinched at by every company under the sun, many just assume that there is no such thing as privacy on the internet anymore.

Is this over-generalized statement true?

Yes and no. There is privacy to be had online, the key to obtaining it is to not use the web or interact on social media. That means no Twitter, Facebook or Instagram for you. Not only can you not use social media, how would you like to stop using cloud services such as Dropbox or your favorite and arguably the best email service, GMail.  If you fret about privacy — online is NOT where you want to be.

However, at the price of disclosing information about yourself to certain trusted services, which typically force you to agree to the terms of the service, you get to use the service for free.  Examples include every Google service, every social network, any online shopping destination and more.  However, web services collecting information about you and your data (surfing habits, email, articles in your email and more) only make your experience better. How? Instead of getting ads that do not relate to you, you can have ads served that actually make you want to click or entice you to try a new product that you’ve been looking for. In addition, if you’re in the Google ecosystem user your shipping information can be pulled from GMail so that you can track your packages easier, your emails can be monitored for spam or Google Now can tell your how far you are from work and let you know how light or heavy the traffic is. Now those are details that you should want to know! Just think, by you providing a little bit of your data you get a great user experience in return. So, why the bellyaching?

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Bottom line: Unless you want to lose free and convenient services on the internet, you might want to think twice about complaining.

Facebook buys Instagram for $1Billion

Yes, it is official.  Facebook will be acquiring Instagram for $1 billion and this is causing quite the alarm for technologists.  Facebook has been under fire for seemingly forever regarding it’s privacy issues and how they actually use the data that we give them.  Now, this raises the question:  “Will Facebook buying Instagram have a negative effect on the users of the Instagram service?  Will their privacy be in question?  How will Facebook use the data and pictures that are posted via this service?

Facebook has responded by saying that they will leave Instagram as it is and since this acquisition has been announced it has remained true to its promise.  On the other hand, due to the privacy issues that Facebook has, that Instagram may inherit, many users have started to deactivate their Instagram accounts.  However, one can only imagine how long it will be before Instagram takes over as the default method for sharing pictures via Facebook.

Bottom line:  Facebook has not defiled Instagram yet.  So let’s wait around see what actually happens.