Instagram is a very popular application (social networking service) which allows you to take pictures and videos, apply digital filters to them and share those pics and videos on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Tumblr.
That’s not all you can tag your pictures (hashtags) so that these get popular globally, you can also share your picture location. Just like other social networking sites it allows you to add your friends, follow people and get more followers (to increase your pictures popularity). Instagram is currently available as a free app for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and Android mobiles.
Read this guide on Instagram to figure more about this service and to know why everyone’s talking about it. This article is a tutorial on Instagram – how you can sign up with this service, add a few friends, click pictures and capture videos and share these. Most of the steps are common for all the devices (whether it is iPhone or Android).
Installation and Signup – Instagram
Below are the steps for download, installation and signup with Instagram.
Download and Install
You can download the Instagram app from Apply Store on your iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad. For Android mobiles – you can go to Google Play Store and search for “Instagram” on it. Simply download and install the app just like you do for other applications. This app is free to download and install.
Start the Application
To start the application, simply tap the Instagram application in your home screen (common for iPhone/Android mobiles).
Sign up with Instagram
When you first open the application, you will see two buttons (register and sign in). Click the register button at the bottom – Enter your email ID, username, password, Phone number (optional) and upload a photo (again optional) to create a new account. Click done.
You now have an option to add your (import your friend list) from Facebook and other social networking accounts (or even your contacts). This is optional as you can anytime add friends within your account. So you may skip this or add friends at this point of time. Click next when you are done.
As said above, Instagram is based on concept of following people and get followed. You now have an option to follow suggested Instagram users by clicking “Follow” button next to their name. The pictures shared by the people you follow will be visible in your photo stream. Click “Done” to complete the signup process.
By default the home screen (Photo Feed) shows the pictures shared by the people you are following. You can scroll through the pictures. The feed tab (home screen) is the left most button at the bottom of the screen. You can refresh to get the updated pictures.
Like or Comment
Any picture you see in the photo stream – you have the option to like that image or comment on that image. You can also double tap to like that image.
Explore Images – Use Search
The next button (adjacent to home button) is the explore button. One of the highly useful feature. You can explore images here (no matter you are following people or not) – you can explore. Use the search bar at the top to search for any particular user or search the images based on hashtag (eg. love, smile, car etc).. Click on any image to see the full image (like or comment as specified above).
Instagram – Pictures
This section talks about how you can click pictures and apply filters to the images. You can also upload the picture from your gallery and apply filters to those images. Share these on social networking sites.
First thing first.. Instagram will need to save the images to your photo gallery (and also access images from photo gallery). You will see to change the settings first so as to allow Instagram to access your photo gallery.
- Go to settings (iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch)
- Select Privacy — Select Photos
- Enable Instagram here
Click at the camera/share button (middle button), this allows you to click photos or select photos from your photo album. Click the camera button.
This screen has many features –
- Select Grid
- Change the camera (select front/back camera)
- Click an image
- Change settings to capture video
- Select image from gallery – This also works for scale and crop images
Instagram Apply Photo Filters
Once you have clicked an image (or cropped it to be of square size), you can apply digital filters to the image. These filters completely change the look of the image – choose from sutro, toaster, Brannan, Earlybird etc.. Moreover you can also apply effects like blur the image, choose a photo frame, change image light exposure etc.. When your editing is done, click Next!
Share your image – Add Details
This is one of the most important steps – You can add a caption to your image. You can tag people in the image (add people). Then you can add a photo map to it (that is share photo location). You can also share the image to Facebook, Twitter, Email the image or share it on Tumble, Flickr.. Finally click Share!
We have been saying that hashtags should be used to increase popularity. But where ?
When adding description of the image – you can add hashtags to your images. For example – #love #dog #dogfood etc.. So when you click any hashtag (your image will also appear there).
- Following and News – The next button to camera button is the news button. Click the “News” tab to get the latest updates from Instagram and other users whom you are following.
- Last button (tab) is the settings button – Here you can find your profile – the number of posts you have made, the number of people you are following and number of your followers. You can also edit your profile here – you can also add your website details here.
- Find & Invite Friends, Also see the posts you have liked
- Change share settings (Facebook, Twitter, Email, Tumblr, Flickr, FourSquare) – add your social networking website details here. So that you can automatically share all your images to Facebook from Instagram.
- Change push notifications settings etc…
Instagram Capture Video – Apply Filters and Share
This is quite a new feature and many people want to know about this. We will capture this in a separate article and share a link here.. !
Instagram – Important things to know
- Private Account – If you don’t want that others see your profile and the images you have shared, change account settings to private.
- Always use HashTags in your images – this helps a lot to make your images popular
- Try to share bright, colorful and funny pictures than the boring ones
- Choose a funny/company username to create brand value
- Make sure to add friends from your social networking account. This will help you getting instant visibility.
- Follow people and they will follow you back. Helps a lot to get more followers in short span of time.
- Use the explore feature to view different images and see videos.
- Use Instagram on daily basis – keep your account updated and be regular. Consistency is the key!
- The Instagram app requires an iPhone, iPod touch, iPad running iOS 3.1.2 or later. For Android it works on Froyo (2.2) or above
- Share, Share and Share – Attach all your social networking accounts and share the images (captured via Instagram) on Facebook. This helps a lot to get more visibility.