Instagram for Android uncovers the ugly class war between iOS and Android

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
Instagram for Android uncovers the ugly class war between iOS and Android
We have written a number of times about the absurdity of the fanboy wars and the absolute viciousness with which people attack each other over something as trivial as that person's choice in mobile phone. It is and forever will be nothing more than a choice. Some people prefer Apple, some prefer Android, some even prefer bada or Windows Phone or even BlackBerry, yet because someone's personal preference is different than yours, apparently that means everyone has free reign to slander, degrade, and mock. We think it is appalling, but no matter what, it will continue happening right below our words, in the comment threads, because as far as fanboys are concerned, there is no option for civility, objectivity, and rational discourse on the Internet. It is disgusting, but never more so than with the introduction of Instagram on Android. 

Instagram made its debut on Android just two days ago, and as of yesterday it had already shot into the 1 million to 5 million download bracket in the Google Play Store. It was always expected that Instagram would be a hit on Android just as it had been on iOS, but this was a huge launch. There had been no real warning, no announcement, just a sign-up page that never ended up doing anything, and the app was dropped into the Play Store on a Tuesday morning. There were those who didn't care all that much, because of the alternatives already available on the platform, but in general, users were pretty pumped for the release... Android users that is. 

Following the release on Android, Twitter exploded with anti-Android sentiment. Whether genuine or fueled by silly hipsterism, the messages relayed the same idea: Instagram was going to be ruined by all of the poor people who own Android phones. There have been hundreds, if not thousands of messages saying things like "Instagram on Android... ew..." or this gem by @TheBoy_Prince saying, "Instagram on Android is mad dirty it used to be special now it's just gross". There are plenty more, but we have no interest in supporting them by linking or reposting them here.

We have all seen the various studies that claim that the average iPhone user is more wealthy, educated, well-traveled et cetera, et cetera, while Android users tend to be poorer. Of course, this is to be expected given that until the launch of the iPhone 4S, there was no "free" iPhone. This lower-end market is the exact reason why Android was able to eclipse Apple as far as overall market share so quickly. Add that to the general perception that Apple products are for rich people, because of the overall higher cost across devices, and we can certainly understand where the sentiment gained its roots, but that doesn't make it any more acceptable to stereotype an entire group.  

The way we see it, technology is the great equalizer of the world. Yes, there is always a delay in new technology making its way from the more affluent early-adopters to the masses, but once that happens, everyone is put on more equal footing. At first, the Internet was relegated to a small segment of society, and now everyone in the world can find their way to the web, and many do so with mobile devices as their primary connection. The Internet is booming in Asia, Africa and South America because mobile reduces the barrier to entry. This means we truly are living in a more globally connected world, free to share anything from knowledge to pictures with various filters put on them. 

And, that's really the most annoying part about this. What makes Instagram so special that it will be sullied by the arrival of Android users? We commend the Instagram developers for cultivating such a fervent following, but the reality is that it's nothing more than a camera app with some filters that relied very heavily on existing social networks to build its own. Obviously, the app is doing something right given that it has somewhere north of 30 million iOS users, and now somewhere from 1 to 5 million Android users. Of course, Instagram is also seeing a general pushback from Facebook users whose feeds are being overwhelmed with Instagram pictures. 

The two main successes of Instagram are:
  1. Auto-sharing to social networks, Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr (with Flickr coming soon), and
  2. Filters

The auto-sharing, as we've just mentioned, is something of a double-edged sword. It has helped to grow the network by getting the pictures tons of link juice via Facebook and Twitter, but the pictures are beginning to get tiresome. And that, is directly because of Instagram's #2 success: the filters. Filters are a genius idea because they make everyone think that they are an amazing photographer, and that their pictures are somehow far more interesting because it looks like it has been laying in a shoebox for the past 40 years. The truth is that an interesting picture is what makes an interesting picture, not a slight sepia tone slapped on to another picture of your dinner or your pet. 

The ultimate failure of Instagram can be easily seen just by flipping between your follower feed and the popular feed in the app. The popular feed for the most part is made up of the truly interesting pictures with good composition, intelligent use of filters, and interesting subjects. Your follower feed, and by extension Facebook and Twitter, are filled with the same boring pictures people always take, but now they think you'll love them and find the photographer to be so much more artsy, because they added on the "toaster" filter. 

We can't really imagine what exactly will be ruined by the addition of Android users to Instagram, but of course there's no logic in bigotry. It's just blind, intolerant, and brings us all down. Fanboys of all camps can be a nasty bunch, but sometimes, as in this case, there is a much more pervasive evil among more casual users of certain platforms. The perception seems to be that Apple users are rich elitists, and Android users are essentially poor, unkempt hobos. It saddens us enough about the state of Internet discourse and web culture to have to try to do our jobs objectively with the molten hate spewed by fanboys and trolls alike (sometimes there isn't much difference between the two), but the responses that are still flowing on Twitter about Instagram is something that makes us sad about humanity in general. 

sources: Buzzfeed & laist



1. andro.

Posts: 1999; Member since: Sep 16, 2011

The comments appearing here should be interesting!

29. eyephone

Posts: 69; Member since: Apr 05, 2012

Poor Fans getting Reds!

250. EriKzAndroid

Posts: 1; Member since: Apr 07, 2012

Eyephone, cute...Let me guess you think your part of the illuminati? Guess what you're not, at best your a 3rd° F.M. and I doubt you even are a traveling man, and if you're claiming to be so, I am pulling your card...tell me brother where do you hail from? Don't try to be a part of something in which you have not a clue about. One last thing why don't you take down that avitar of the unspoken ones eye or I might have to show you a lesson or two in the square about what life is really about. Also I am quite wealthy although wait what kind of phone do I have, oh yes a Motorola Droid II GLOBAL in White. So this all of the sudden makes me a hunter/gatherer?

251. cripton805

Posts: 1485; Member since: Mar 18, 2012

Its spelled avatar. ;)

255. AllEyezOnMe

Posts: 4; Member since: Feb 27, 2012

Plz just stfu

83. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

I never knew what Instragram was until I saw this post on another site a few days ago. I still dont know what it is... I agree its sad some ppl actually think like that. And dont care who knows...some comments are connected to real names. And real pics. Some ppl take Android vs. iOS THAT serious? I should know....I've seen some of the comments on here

194. KIANO

Posts: 91; Member since: Feb 13, 2011

Visit Instagram website to learn about it.

196. thinking

Posts: 130; Member since: Jan 19, 2012

Same here. And interestingly, all these sites hyping Instagram don't care to say what it is. yes, I can search and find out but I think the first time a site reports it, it should mention what it is.

2. Tmachaveli

Posts: 425; Member since: Apr 01, 2011

That was well said its really a shame that other are ppl like that in the world

3. jamvts

Posts: 14; Member since: Jan 27, 2012

haha Nonsense and immature reaction by ios fanboys .... think about it more than half of the Olympic players comes from small town ...... and the wealthy guys don't have guts to match them same in this situation. so that means they are inferior? :rolf:

17. JeffdaBeat unregistered

I don't think that's fair. I'm a big Apple Fanboy, but I wouldn't come close to saying those things. Instagram is a hipster app in and of itself. Same goes with Path. These apps are small communities of people sharing their lives with each other. Hell, even I love the fact that Instagram isn't this big popular thing because there is less "noise" than Facebook. Now that it's been opened up to a much larger audience than just iOS, there will be more noise. But people shouldn't assume that Android users are poor or have ruined Instagram. iOS users can take some pretty terrible photos as well. It's just now, you've got a larger audience that will take crappy pictures...the ratio is the same...but because the number is higher, the crappy picture count raises as well. Still, we have to get past this poor/rich crap. Having less money than someone else doesn't mean that you will automatically take crappy pictures. I'm from Detroit and a good portion of the time, I was taking photos of urban decay. Some of my favorite pictures. Take good pictures...that's it.

25. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

exactly. unfortunately Jeff u are one of the small handful© resident iOS fanboys that has real intelligence. you are the minority of your group. the majority Is made up of loud,crass, ignorant posters that say exactly what this article is talking about. that's why i wish u would post more. lol

27. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

That's a very odd comment for you to make. You're the poster boy for a fandroid, full of blind android rage.

31. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

coming from you ill take that as a compliment .. care to back that up with fact since I defend and rip all OSs and manufacturers when appropriate?

34. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

btw quit thumbing your self up.. its sad.

64. JeffdaBeat unregistered

You can't thumb yourself up or down anymore...

88. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

yes you can. I can do it on my tablet and PC if I wanted tpo maybe it's flash enabled? lol

158. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

wow, i could when you said that, but now i cant. interesting.. very very interesting. :) BOUT DARN TIME!

67. andro.

Posts: 1999; Member since: Sep 16, 2011

Looks like tacos many log in alias have all thumbed you down!!!

37. snowgator

Posts: 3621; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

I would take a remixfa criticism over a ton of other posters blind compliments.

46. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

If you think remix is an objective poster that's a negative tick on you.

82. greathero1

Posts: 584; Member since: Jun 13, 2008

No it's more than a small handful. The majority of iOS users including myself could give a rats ass about who's poor or rich and what photos users are posting. You want to take the behavior of a few and try to portray the entire base as idiots like those commenters which is wrong. From observing this forum,mi can tell you that there are just as many android idiots as there are iOS idiots. Too many times over, these fanboys take this crap too seriously.

116. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

sorry GH, but the majority of iOS users with brains are not the biggest posters on this board. The loud minority then ruins it for the silent majority. I didnt say no iOS users had brains, because thats completely untrue.. but the vast majority of posts on PA by iOS fans are by the local nutjubs like taco. Android definitely has its crazed fans as well, but since there seems to be more "android" posters these days it tends to keep the fringe from looking like the norm.. unlike the "iOS" side, where the fringe is the loud majority.

108. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

Remix stereotyping iOS users and being a hypocrite as usual

117. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

and again, this article was aimed directly at you taco. look your internet famous for being a troll. arent you excited?

118. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

remix, you gotta cool it. in your very first comment on this post, you called Apple users "chalupas". you lost your standing in this conversation.

134. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

no, i didnt michael. I didnt call apple users chalupas, i said there were a few "chalupas" that used the exact terminology that you argued against in the article. And what is a chalupa? Its a Mexican food... well, at least according to taco bell. know anyone on this board that uses such terminology and is named after a Mexican food? It was a sly way of pointing out that person without calling him out. I figured people would have made the connection. Guess I'll have to be more direct, lol.

4. jamvts

Posts: 14; Member since: Jan 27, 2012

see 2 dislikes to all the 3 posts means 2 ios fanboys actually looking and it and getting angry free advice go to school and learn something.

24. JeffdaBeat unregistered

Again...I'm an Apple Fanboy and my comment above got two thumbs down. A lot of the popular topics have been seeing this consistantly in the past few days.

32. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

I've given u 2 green thumbs so far. :)

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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