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Facebook acquires Instagram for $1 billion

by Moyo Roy
10 Apr 2012 at 11:37hrs | Views
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Monday delivered announced via a post on his  social-networking site that Facebook will acquire the smart phone app company, Instagram for $1 billion in cash and stock.

"For years, we've been focused on building the best experience for sharing photos with your friends and family," Zuckerberg wrote.

"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."

Instagram started as a free iPhone app that allows users to snap photos, then share them with friends. It includes more than a dozen filters that alter images to look like Polaroids or shots from the 1970s and in less than two years has become one of the most popular phone apps.

The young team behind Instagram, CEO Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger (both in their mid-20s), say they were inspired by the magic of instant Polaroid film and the idea of wired telegram messages.

"When we were kids, we loved playing around with cameras," they wrote on Instagram's website.

The Standford University graduates founded Instagram in 2009 in San Francisco.

The startup had just 13 employees at last count, tech blog All Things D reports, and became available to the public in October 2010.

The app's rise in popularity has been astronomical. Instagram became available to Android users last week and added one million users to its existing 30 million in just 12 hours.

On Friday, All Things D reported Instagram was set to be valued at $500 million and would receive $50 million in its Series B round of funding, led by Sequoia Capital.

Zuckerberg said Facebook will not make many changes to the app and users will not be forced to post their photos to Facebook and will be able to share their pictures on other social networks like Twitter and Tumblr.

"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," he wrote. "We don't plan on doing any more of these, if any at all." Instagram echoed that message to its users in its own blog post Monday.

"It's important to be clear that Instagram is not going away," Systrom wrote. "The Instagram app will still be the same one you know and love."

Source - NYDaily