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Instagram for Android is robot-powered retro, out now

Instagram, the app that turns your photos into painfully trendy retro snaps, is out now on Android.

Luke Westaway Senior editor
Luke Westaway is a senior editor at CNET and writer/ presenter of Adventures in Tech, a thrilling gadget show produced in our London office. Luke's focus is on keeping you in the loop with a mix of video, features, expert opinion and analysis.
Luke Westaway
2 min read
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Instagram, the app that turns your smart phone photos into painfully trendy retro snaps, is out now for Android.

The hugely popular free app has been a staple of Apple's iOS platform for some time, with over 27 million registered users. Now it's finally made the jump to Google's robot-powered OS, enabling Android fans to be every bit as hip as iPhone owners.

For the uninitiated, Instagram uses your phone's camera to apply old-school filters to your snaps, simulating the Polaroid and Instamatic aesthetic of yesteryear.

The app only gives you a square to work with, so all your photos come out looking decidedly boxy, but that's in keeping with the retro snapper the app emulates. Once you've applied a filter and taken a photo, Instagram lets you upload your snap to your social network of choice.

The Android version appears to be missing the tilt-shift feature found on iOS, which lets you blur out select bits of your photo.

There's no denying Instagram lets you capture some lovely snaps, with a vintage look that's painfully charming. But I can't help but feel that our digital photos will already look rubbish in 30 years' time, without the need to make them look like they were snapped in the 70s.

I feel like we're cheating ourselves out of the opportunity to look back and say, "Oh the quality of this photo is so 2012, I can't believe we ever thought 8 megapixels looked good!" Before, presumably, hopping onto a space motorbike and flying to the moons of Jupiter.

Are you an Instamatic fan? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.

Download Instagram for Android here.