Facebook Buys Instagram For $1 Billion

Facebook just announced on its blog that the company has purchased the popular photo sharing app Instagram for a cool $1 billion. The news comes shortly after Instagram just launched its popular Android app, which has seen great success.

But the real success of Instagram is over on iOS, where the app has exploded to be one of the top apps on the iTunes App Store. Before its release on Android, Instagram boasted over 30 million users and added 1 million the day Instagram launched on Android.  Check out Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerburg’s announcement:

I’m excited to share the news that we’ve agreed to acquire Instagram and that their talented team will be joining Facebook.

For years, we’ve focused on building the best experience for sharing photos with your friends and family. Now, we’ll be able to work even more closely with the Instagram team to also offer the best experiences for sharing beautiful mobile photos with people based on your interests.

We believe these are different experiences that complement each other. But in order to do this well, we need to be mindful about keeping and building on Instagram’s strengths and features rather than just trying to integrate everything into Facebook.

That’s why we’re committed to building and growing Instagram independently. Millions of people around the world love the Instagram app and the brand associated with it, and our goal is to help spread this app and brand to even more people.

We think the fact that Instagram is connected to other services beyond Facebook is an important part of the experience. We plan on keeping features like the ability to post to other social networks, the ability to not share your Instagrams on Facebook if you want, and the ability to have followers and follow people separately from your friends on Facebook.

These and many other features are important parts of the Instagram experience and we understand that. We will try to learn from Instagram’s experience to build similar features into our other products. At the same time, we will try to help Instagram continue to grow by using Facebook’s strong engineering team and infrastructure.

This is an important milestone for Facebook because it’s the first time we’ve ever acquired a product and company with so many users. We don’t plan on doing many more of these, if any at all. But providing the best photo sharing experience is one reason why so many people love Facebook and we knew it would be worth bringing these two companies together.

We’re looking forward to working with the Instagram team and to all of the great new experiences we’re going to be able to build together.

Instagram also announced the news on its blog and made it clear that the Instagram app isn’t going away. “It’s important to be clear that Instagram is not going away. We’ll be working with Facebook to evolve Instagram and build the network. We’ll continue to add new features to the product and find new ways to create a better mobile photos experience.”

Presumably, Instagram’s roughly 12 employees will not only be earning a nice payout, but will also be joining Facebook’s team to work on mobile. It will be very interesting what type of integration Instagram gets with Facebook over time.

How do you feel about the news?