Happy birthday, Instagram — you’re almost old enough to go to preschool

Image Credit: Chris Hatch/Flickr
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Instagram turns 3 years old on Monday, and your dessert has never looked better.

Just kidding, Instagram. We give you a lot of crap for being the app that has taken us away from our family dinners and hang-time with friends, but we all know we secretly love you. Somehow, Instagram has inserted itself into our daily lives, and without it, we would look just a little less cool.

For those 14 year olds who only just joined the service, Instagram is a real business. Well, it just became a real business since announcing ads (congrats!). The company first started as Burbn, a social networking app that combined check-ins, similar to Foursquare, and photo-sharing. After realizing that everyone gravitated toward the photo features, cofounder Kevin Systrom decided to isolate the tech that would eventually become Instagram.

In April 2012, Facebook bought Instagram for a crazy $1 billion and gave the company the resources it needed to grow. Now Instagram has more than 150 million people taking pictures, supports video, and counts major organizations and individuals such as NASA and President Barack Obama as users. People have created entire businesses on the service. In June, the company had more than 16 billion photos uploaded.

Certainly, Instagram has matured in three years and will jump from toddler to businessperson in 2014. Instagram director of business operations Emily White announced that Instagram will get advertising while speaking with the Wall Street Journal last month.

So, happy birthday, Instagram. Thanks for the eye candy. Don’t mess it up.

Now look at the pretty:

More about the companies and people from this article:

Facebook is the world’s largest social network, with over 1.15 billion monthly active users. Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg in February 2004, initially as an exclusive network for Harvard students. It was a huge hit: in 2 w... read more »

Instagram is a free photo sharing application designed for use on Apple iOS devices developed by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger. The application, which is compatible with any iPhone or iPod Touch running iOS 3.1.2 or above, allows user... read more »

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