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When did Instagram come out?

Instagram has become a staple of social media, but how long has it been around?

instagram social media logo and blurred background
Image: KnowTechie

For many people, Instagram is an integral part of their daily routines. What users love about the social media app is that it offers a virtual window into the lives of family, friends, and even celebrities. 

Instagram is also a great way to kill time by scrolling endlessly through photos of cute pets, tasty food, the latest fashion trends and many other categories.

And since the launch of Instagram Reels in 2020, the platform is home to lots of entertaining video clips. In addition to viewing photos and videos on Instagram, you likely upload photos now and again. 

Either way, Instagram is incredibly popular. It currently ranks as the world’s fourth biggest social networking site, with over 1.4 billion users around the world and constantly growing. 

While you could be an active Instagram user, you might know little about the company and its impressive history. One of the questions you might have is – “When did Instagram come out?”. Read on to find out the answer.

So, when did Instagram launch?

Short answer: 2010

The platform has been a staple in the social space, but when did Instagram come out?

Instagram has been around for 12 years, launched in 2010 by programmer Kevin Systrom and software engineer Mike Krieger.

Surprisingly, Kevin and Mike didn’t set out to create Instagram as an all-purpose image-sharing app.

In the early stages of the company’s development, the platform wasn’t even called “Instagram.” It was a location check-in app called Burbn.

instagram app - when did instagram come out
Image: Unsplash

Facing tough competition from Foursquare and learning that many of Burbn’s users like to share photos on the platform, Kevin and Mike decided to pivot by creating an image-sharing app instead.

They called their new app “Instagram” by combining “instant camera” and “telegram.”

When did Facebook buy Instagram?

Short answer: 2012 

After Instagram launched, it quickly became a hit among users and was acquired by Facebook for $1 billion in 2012. When the acquisition took place, Instagram had a team of 13 employees.

READ MORE: Who’s the most followed person on Instagram?

But with revenues in the tens of billions of dollars, Instagram is now one of Facebook’s most profitable brands. And the acquisition proved fruitful for both parties. 

Facebook-Meta-logos

Since buying Instagram, Facebook has introduced a plethora of new features to the platform – including Instagram stories and Instagram Reels.

For this reason, it remains popular in the face of stiff competition from newer rivals like TikTok.

READ MORE: Can you see who views your Instagram Stories?

Another thing worth mentioning is that Instagram, along with Facebook, falls under one parent company called Meta.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced Meta last fall, and with a renewed focus on emerging technologies like the Metaverse, there’s no doubt Instagram will continue to evolve in the coming years.

Instagram is one of the most popular social platforms out there

The Meta-owned platform continues to draw in millions of people every single day around the world. The social giant is also quick to add new features constantly.

And now you know a little bit about its history, including the answer to the question “When did Instagram come out?” Are you surprised that the platform is a decade old, or did you think it was even older?

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Nicholas is a freelance technology journalist from the Welsh valleys. He's written for outlets like the Financial Times, Forbes, The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, The Next Web, Engadget and Computer Weekly. When Nicholas isn't writing, he's probably listening to Mariah Carey or watching videos of sausage dogs on TikTok.

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