Instagram’s Kevin Systrom told us today how people “come together to share the world in real time” as the company planned to unveil Instagram’s video service — which we first reported earlier this week. And he also revealed new stats: Instagram now hosts 16 billion photos for 130 million users, who have interacted on the network with 1 billion likes.
That’s 30 million more users than Facebook reported for Instagram just a month ago, and more than double what Instagram had when Facebook first made its offer to acquire the app, in April of last year, when Instagram had around 50 million monthly active users.
That underscores what a runaway success the app has been so far. Earlier today I noted how Instagram is currently the most popular photo sharing app on the iPhone in the U.S., with over 35 percent of iPhone users accessing it every month, giving it a lead of nearly 20 percentage points over Snapchat.
It will be interesting to see how the introduction of the new video features impacts that: yes, it will enhance the service, but the question is whether current users will feel that it interferes with what Instagram already offers, and subsequently migrate elsewhere; or whether they will naturally move to using it alongside the photo features. That’s putting to one side whether Instagram might pick up completely new users who are interested in the video service alone. At the moment, Vine is the most popular among the mobile video apps, but with only around a 10 percent market share, there are many more users for both to target.
In fact, with Vine allowing for 6.5 seconds of video and Instagram going for 15 seconds of video, you could almost wonder whether some might just use both.
Read our liveblog here.