Facebook Releases New Instagram-Style Photo App for iPhone

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Hey, remember when Facebook bought Instagram for $1 billion? Well apparently buying the number one mobile photo app on the market isn’t stopping the freshly IPO-ed Facebook team from releasing a similar app of its own.

Presenting Facebook Camera for the iPhone and iPod touch. The app was developed sans the Instagram team, seeing as the acquisition isn’t quite a done deal.

Despite that fact, Facebook Camera sure borrows a lot of the features that made Instagram so popular. First and foremost are the 15 filters, which come in such nostalgia-inducing styles as cool, golden and emerald. This is one area where Facebook Camera actually makes more sense than Instagram — you get an idea of what the filters do from their names. Sutro, anyone?

Another cool feature is the ability to upload multiple photos from your camera roll to your Facebook account all at once. Simply tap the check mark on whatever photos you want to share and then hit “Post.” This has the added bonus of sparing your friends from having to watch a series of photos slowly trickle into their feed from your vacation in Mexico.

You can also browse through your friends’ photos, all of which are displayed screen-wide with a maximum resolution of 2,048 by 2,048, according to the New York Times. Other basic editing tools, such as the ability to crop and straighten, are also included.

So, why is Facebook launching a new photo app when it has Instagram waiting in the wings? As the Times points out, Instagram has 40 million users. Facebook has 900 million. That leaves a lot of users out there without a particularly good way to share photos on Facebook.

Considering how weak Facebook’s mobile offerings have been so far, it’s nice to see the company offer a dedicated app that focuses on what many people joined Facebook for in the first place — sharing photos.

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