Instagram finally arrives for Windows Phone … with half the features missing

instagramwinpho

If you’ve been waiting to get your filter fix with your favorite Windows Phone device like the Lumia 1020, your wait is over – well, mostly. On Wednesday, Instagram announced its release of the Instagram app for Windows 8 devices, though it’s still in beta. This basically means you get most of the features of Instagram, though you’ll still have to wait a little while longer for all the features.

For some reason, it’s taken a very long time to get a Windows Phone version finally released – and even now, it lacks photo tagging and video recording. You can, however, see tags and videos taken by iOS and Android users, like some kind of cruel joke on the Windows Phone crowd. To make matters worse, the Windows Phone Store’s Instagram page advertises the ability to record videos even though it’s not yet available.

Also lacking from Instagram for Windows Phone is the ability to shoot photos within the app, which users of other operating systems have always been able to do. WP users must, instead, shoot photos with the standard camera app, then add filters and upload their photos later. Not a huge deal, but it’s yet another example of just how half-baked this iteration of Instagram really is.

One possible reason for Instagram’s delay in getting a Windows Phone app out the door is the differences between Windows Phone and iOS or Android. But given the amount of time Windows Phone users have waited for Instagram so far, the company might as well have taken a bit of extra time to get it right. Regardless, there may not be much incentive for Instagram to expend many resources on this version; according to Gartner, Windows Phone only managed a mere 3.6 percent market share of all smartphones sold in the last quarter. That equates to 8 million devices sold – far behind either Android or iOS, with little chance of an uptick anytime soon.

If you’re chomping at the bit to get your Windows Phone-loving hands on Instagram, the beta version is available for download from Microsoft’s Windows Phone Store, or, of course, by searching for Instagram on your phone. We haven’t yet heard when all the missing features will become available, but the optimist in us assumes they aren’t far off.

Mobile

Want more power, but faster? This new charging tech claims it can deliver

Chunky power bricks and slow charging could be a thing of the past with GaNFast technology from Navitas Semiconductors. By using an alternative to silicon, GaNFast reduces power consumption and boosts output.
Photography

From DIY to AAA, here's how to take a passport photo in 6 different ways

If you're applying for a passport or renewing one, you need to submit a photo in your official application. There are strict guidelines, but fortunately, it's something you can do at home. Here's how to take a passport photo.
Mobile

Android vs. iOS: Which smartphone platform is the best?

If you’re trying to choose a new phone and you’re not sure about the merits and pitfalls of the leading smartphone operating systems, then come on in for a detailed breakdown as we pit Android vs. iOS in various categories.
Mobile

On a budget? We found the best affordable smartphones you can buy

Here are the best cheap phones for anyone working with a tight budget, whether you're a fan of stock Android or marathon battery life. Find out what you can get for under $500 or far, far less as we round up the best budget smartphones.
Mobile

We tried all the latest and greatest smartphones to find the best of 2019

Smartphones are perhaps the most important and personal piece of tech on the planet. That’s why it’s important to pick the best phone for your individual needs. Here are the best smartphones you can buy.
Wearables

Swatch and Mastercard team up for on-the-wrist, on-the-go mobile payments

Swatch has announced its Swatchpay technology is now available in Switzerland, enabling mobile payments from your Swatch watch. It works in a similar way to Apple Pay and Google Pay. Here's everything about it.
Mobile

Do these Geekbench results accurately represent the Moto G7?

The Moto G6 range is still relatively new to the market, but rumors have already started about the Moto G7, which is expected some time in 2019. Apparently, a G7 Power version will be joining the G7, G7 Play, and G7 Plus.
Mobile

Sony is showing something off at MWC -- will it be the Xperia XZ4?

Sony may have released the Xperia XZ3 in the past few months, but already it's preparing to release a follow-up, the Xperia XZ4. We're learning plenty about the phone now some details have started to leak out, and it's getting exciting.
Home Theater

Set your ears free with the best completely wireless earbuds

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best true wireless earbuds around.
Mobile

Is this the first image of a Galaxy S10 being used in real life?

It won't be long now; With 2019 underway, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is almost here. Before it arrives, here's absolutely everything you need to know about all three of Samsung's next flagships.
Wearables

Omron HeartGuide brings blood pressure monitoring to your wrist

High blood pressure leads to heart attacks, strokes, and many other health problems, so it's important to keep an eye on. Omron's HeartGuide is a fitness tracking watch that can also monitor your blood pressure from your wrist.
Business

Google is buying mysterious smartwatch tech from The Fossil Group for $40 million

Google is about to step up its smartwatch game. The company has agreed to buy an unnamed smartwatch technology from The Fossil Group for a hefty $40 million. Considering the acquisition, it's clear Google is serious about smartwatches.
Mobile

Learn how to play YouTube in the background on iOS and Android

We show you how to play YouTube in the background with apps such as Opera, Chrome, and Firefox -- along with the premium offerings like YouTube Premium -- whether you have an Android or iOS device.
Mobile

Verizon’s deal could get you a free iPhone XR — but there’s some fine print

Verizon launched a new deal for its smartphones aimed at encouraging customers to open a new line. If you're willing and you want two new phones, you could get a free Samsung Galaxy S9, iPhone XR, or Pixel 3.