What features would an alternative have to have to qualify as a worthy substitute for instagram? There are four: it must be a mobile app with an integrated camera, it must offer filters, it must have a big pool of users who share within the app and a policy that doesn't reserve the right to use members' photos in ads (the suspicion of which started the Instagram uproar). Using this criteria, ex-Instagrammers are left with two options.
Once the leader in photo sharing, Flickr now has around 50 million registered users. Flickr recently updated its mobile app for iPhone and Android with photo filters, provided by Aviary, the same company that provides them to Twitter. But Flickr added a bigger selection of filters and editing tools compared with Twitter.
One of Flickr's benefits is the ability to upload multiple photos and then edit by swiping through the images. Instagram and Twitter allow uploading only one photo at a time. While the community may not be as social as other networks, you can easily share your finished photos to Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr. Further, you can easily choose from Flickr's privacy options — public, friends and family, only family, only friends, only you — for each photo before you share it. You can even assign a safety rating, ranging from safe to restricted, which will determine when your public photos are shown in search results on Flickr.
Unlike either Twitter or Instagram, Flickr offers an ad-free option — for $25 a year.
If you can live without filters, you might also consider the Pinterest or Tumblr apps. Both mobile versions have an integrated camera and thriving communities that number around 25 million. Tumblr offers limited advertising opportunities to its members, but claims no right to use a member's photo or other content in ads. Pinterest does not include ads at this time.