Facebook rushes to launch Instagram-like app


Facebook rushes to launch Instagram-like app

Warwick Ashford

Facebook has introduced a mobile photo sharing app to demonstrate that it is being proactive on the mobile front, say analysts.

The app, simply called "Camera", enables users to take multiple photos and share them immediately without uploading them one by one.  

The app, which features a feed of friends' photos, offers similar photo editing tools to Instagram, currently being acquired by Facebook in a $1bn deal.

The launch of the Camera app ahead of the acquisition makes sense, say analysts, because Facebook cannot afford to wait for the deal to go through, which may take up to 12 months.

"Facebook now operates in a post-IPO world in which it is under intense pressure to take its business to the next level and drive value, and to do so quickly," said Eden Zoller, principal analyst at Ovum.

Mobile presents opportunities for Facebook to extend its reach and engagement with users, and the launch of Camera is an attempt to demonstrate that it is being proactive, he said.

"Facebook needs access to a better photo-sharing user interface that will give it more control over an important type of shared content, and better insights into the users who generate it," said Zoller.

On completion of the acquisition, he said there is nothing to stop Facebook quietly incorporating Camera into the stronger Instagram.

The Facebook Camera app is available iPhones and iPads. Facebook has given no indication if or when the app will be available for other mobile platforms.

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