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Tech Throwback: Instagram Originally Launched On iOS Ten Years Ago, See How Far It Has Come

On 6th October 2020, Instagram launched publicly through the App Store for iOS users. Before that day, its original founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger had been developing the software for over a year.


They had decided to make the software a photo-sharing platform, a deviation from its original mobile check-in app idea. Before its launch in October, the founders had secured a number of funding. In March 2010, they got a $500,000 seed funding. Instagram was a company of about five people at its launch.


The first Instagram post was a photo of South Beach Harbor at Pier 38, posted by Mike Krieger at 5:26 PM on July 16, 2010. Co-founder, Systrom shared his first post, a picture of a dog and his girlfriend’s foot, a few hours later.


Later, in 2011 Instagram raised $7 million in Series A funding from Benchmark Capital, Jack Dorsey, Chris Sacca and Adam D’Angelo. It raised $50 million in 2012 from venture capitalists. Instagram launched its Android version on 3rd April 2012, raising its number of users astronomically.


Facebook bought Instagram six days after it launched for Android phones on 9th April 2012. The deal was $1 billion in cash and stock. It led to some investigations from UK’s Office of Fair Trading and US Federal Trade Commission.

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The software became available for desktop users in November 2012 but this version had limited features. In 2014, Instagram launched a Fire OS app for Amazon devices. Instagram was a big file app and this discouraged many people from downloading it in its early days. The company cut its app size down to nearly half in 2014 and its number of users shot up as a result. It also got a desktop website redesign in 2015. Instagram revealed its app for Windows 10 in October 2016.


Tech Throwback: Instagram Originally Launched On iOS Ten Years Ago
Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom announcing IGTV in 2018. Photo: VentureBeat.


Since then, the platform has been getting redesigns and new features. Instagram started supporting comment liking in December 2016. In June 2018, Instagram launched IGTV to allow users share loner videos. The two original founders, Krieger and Systrom left the company.


Amid many other new features like ‘like counts’ removal, ‘co-watching’ and many more, Instagram launched Reels in 2020. Many said it was aimed at fighting the popularity of TikTok.


Ten years after its original launch, we can summarise the key features that Instagram brought as follows; hashtags, explore, photography filters, short video sharing, direct message (DM), stories, IGTV, and Reels.


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Onwuasoanya Obinna

A reader of books and stringer of words. Passionate about Science and Tech. When not writing or reading he is surfing the web and Tweeting.

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