What happened when Facebook bought Instagram and transformed the photo-sharing app

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When Fb made a bid to obtain Instagram in 2012 for a document-location $1 billion, quite a few persons imagined Mark Zuckerberg was making a error.

But buying Instagram turned out to be a single of the finest tech acquisitions of all time, helping safe Facebook’s dominance in social media for a long time to arrive. It did that by rapidly imprinting its impact on the famously basic photo-sharing application, incorporating new capabilities that helped it increase to far more than 1 billion buyers.

This form of transform could be controversial, even internally. Scenario in point: Some early staff resisted acquiring rid of Instagram’s old prerequisite that every single image on the application had to be square-shaped.

“It sounds so tiny now, but at the time, it was a sacred cow of the organization,” said Instagram co-head of merchandise Ashley Yuki.

These days, Instagram is however grappling with the obstacle of keeping up with its social media competitiveness — particularly, TikTok — when hoping not to drop the first quality that made the app specific in the to start with place.

We take a look at the changing identity of Instagram for our 3rd episode of the new season of Land of the Giants, Vox Media Podcast Network’s award-profitable narrative podcast sequence about the most influential tech providers of our time. This time, Recode and The Verge have teamed up more than the study course of 7 episodes to inform the tale of Facebook’s journey to getting Meta, showcasing interviews with recent and previous executives.

Pay attention to the third episode of Land of the Giants: The Fb/Meta Disruption, and catch the 1st two episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or anywhere you get your podcasts.

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