Kevin Systrom, Mike Krieger

Cost: Free

Initial release date:

October 2010


#12 on Apples most downloaded free apps

Operating System:

iOS and Android

Revenue Earned: 

None. Instagram’s Director of Business Operations Emily White told the Wall Street Journal late last year that the company may begin use of ads on the app to make a profit.


Users can take photos and videos to which they can apply digital imaging filters to and share with others on a wide variety of social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Flickr.


American users were using the app to sell illicit drugs, using hashtags to direct buyers to their product.

Dealers then used instant messaging apps to make contact with potential customers.

In response, Instagram blocked certain drug-related hashtags from being used.

Why students use it:

“It’s cool because you can make your pictures look better. The filters are fun. The hashtags are fun too because you can look up anything you want and it takes you to a bunch of different people’s pages,” said communication major Paige Puccinelli.