Facebook snaps up Instagram

Facebook took a step closer to complete social network world domination today when the company announced they will be purchasing Instagram, the popular photo-sharing company.

Even though Instagram specializes in making your digital photos look like you found them in a shoebox from 1970 in your grandma’s attic, the company didn’t come cheap. Facebook shelled out a whopping $1 billion to buy the company, making the Instagram deal its largest purchase to date.

And get this, the payment will be in cash and Facebook stock. So keep your eye out for a guy with a really large suitcase walking into Facebook’s graffitied headquarters sometime around June when the deal is expected to close.

The free Instagram app was only available on iPhone until earlier this month when an Android app launched. The photo software has exploded in popularity on social networking sites as it allows users to edit their photos with vintage and Polaroid filters.

Instagram currently boasts more than 30 million registered users.

Facebook has said it will keep Instagram running independently, and that users can still use it on other social networks like Twitter.

The Instagram deal is a shift from Facebook’s previous purchases which have mostly topped out below $100 million. Traditionally, the Menlo Park company has bought small start-ups and integrated the technology into Facebook, or simply just taken the purchased company’s employees talent onboard.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a press release:

“For years, we’ve focused on building the best experience for sharing photos with your friends and family. Now, we’ll be able to work even more closely with the Instagram team to also offer the best experiences for sharing beautiful mobile photos with people based on your interests.”