Instagram iPhone VS. Android: Which One Is Better?

InstagramThis one was inevitable : when Instagram was released for Android on April 3, I knew I had to try out for myself – just to find out how the people on the other side of the fence were doing. Though I am a self-confessed Apple fanboy, it never stopped me from acquiring “other” technologies to compare the user experience with my reliable iDevices.

Let’s get right down to it, shall we?

Instagram for iPhone was released in the later part of 2010 and has been the standard for instant photo sharing on iOS ever since.  Its interface is extremely polished, but very simple to use; without any bloat or complications which may only turn off the average user who just wants to snap a picture, apply a filter and upload to his favorite social network/sharing site.

We all know how good Instagram is on any supported iDevice so we’ll forego its praises and talk more about its brother for Android devices.

First off, Instagram for Android was released a couple of days ago which makes it more than 18 months late compared to the iOS version… but then again, better late than never.  To make this comparison fair, I tried installing the Android version of the app on my Acer Iconia Tab A100 which has more than adequate hardware power to run the program smoothly.


When I tried to download the app from the Google Play store, I was presented with a message saying the app was not compatible with my Tab A100.

What gives?

Undaunted, knowing that this should run well on my Tab A100, I downloaded the app (apk) from another site and set my Tab A100 to install programs from unknown (read : unsupported) sites.

This is what you call “imposing your will” on your device.

Sure enough the app installed and I was able to log in to my account.  The app loaded well and I was able to take a sample photo. This is where the problem started.  The app took the photo alright but it didn’t show on the app’s editing screen.  How can you apply a filter if you can’t see the picture, right?

I thought, “Ok, this must a glitch since I forced-installed the program”, so I tried to get a picture from the gallery instead.  Still no picture and still no go. Hmm… Hey Acer! Listen up.  Instagram doesn’t work on your Tab A100!

Frustrated, I took my wife’s Android phone (Samsung Galaxy Mini) and installed the app via the Play Store.  So far so good – no incompatible shit there and the program booted up just fine.  The interface was identical to the iOS app and I was able to take a sample shot which quickly showed up on the app’s editing screen.  From here on everything went fine and I was able to upload the edited picture (a blade of grass) for the whole world to see.

So how did I find the Android version of Instagram? Aside from the initial incompatibility with my Acer Iconia Tab A100 which was very frustrating since the program SHOULD run well on it, I found the app at par with its older iOS sibling.  Since I was already familiar with the app because I’ve been using it on my iPad 2 for about a year now, and every button is there where the button should be, I will say that Android users will also get a kick out of this app on their (compatible) devices.

Of course, there are some features in the iOS version which are suspiciously absent in the Android version like tilt-shift and live preview which is my opinion shouldn’t have been withheld by the developers, but then again who am I to argue? The app is free, for Pete’s sake, so what am I griping about, right?

Just goes to show how much polished the iOS version of Instagram really is.  It’s been more than 18 months since the iOS version has been released and I was expecting a little more from the Android version but then again, this will have to suffice for now until the developers find the time to improve/update the app.

Perhaps then we could do another blow-by-blow…

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Lito loves tweaking his iDevices and would love to see iOS 6 & iPhone 6 Jailbroken.