Facebook releases Facebook Camera... with Instagram filters?
It's been about a week since Facebook released Facebook Pages Manager, and now Facebook has announced Facebook Camera -- an app dedicated to viewing and sharing photos to Facebook. The big talk on the internet, however, is that this app comes shortly after Facebook's acquisition of Instagram. This is particularly interesting because Facebook Camera allows you to add filters to your photos before uploading -- these filters are strikingly similar to Instagram's filers.
Let's take a look. Here's Facebook's Cream filter next to Instagram's Valencia filter.
And Facebook's Copper next to Instagram's Earlybird.
And Facebook's Cool next to Instagram's Hudson.
No words are even needed to describe the similarities.
So the real question becomes -- did Facebook copy Instagram before buying it, or did Facebook buy Instgram to copy it? I'm inclined to believe it's some combination of the two. There's no doubt that Facebook has been working on this app since well before it purchased Instagram, but my bet is that it was when they started working on the filters they would include with the app that they pursued an acquisition of Instagram. Although the Facebook Camera's filters are not identical to Instagram's, some of them are strikingly similar. As someone who regularly uses Instagram, I noticed the similarities instantly. In fact, before comparing them side-by-side, I thought they were exact replicas.
Which brings to my next question: will Facebook Camera ever include the exact same filters as Instagram? Is this something Facebook should even consider? Some have argued that Facebook is competing with itself by introducing Facebook Camera, which is true in many ways. But ultimately, I think even if both apps include the exact same filters, they will both be independently successful. With the risk of sounding like a snob, the quality of photos on Facebook are not generally as good as Instagram. People typically choose to use Instagram when they want to share a photo they think is particularly good or some fancy collage they created. Facebook, on the other hand, is where people share anything and everything, including random memes and photos from the internet.
What's your take on this? Did Facebook copy Instagram before buying it, or did Facebook buy Instgram to copy it? Was this even a good move by Facebook?