Instagram is a free photo sharing application that allows users to take a photo, apply a digital filter, then share it on a variety of social networking services including Instagram’s own. A distinctive feature confines photos into a square shape, in homage to both the Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid cameras. This contrasts with the 4:3 aspect ratio more typically used by mobile device cameras.
Instagram was initially supported on iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch; in April 2012, the company added support for Android camera phones running 2.2 (Froyo) or higher. It is distributed via the iTunes App Store and Google Play. On April 9, 2012, Facebook announced it would acquire the company (and its 13 employees) for approximately $1 billion in cash and stock, with plans to keep it independently managed.
Designers at Visually have compiled an infographic that documents the startup’s journey from photo app to $1 billion startup using, appropriately, Instagram photos.