The wait is over. Instagraph, the unofficial Instagram posting client for Windows Phone 8, will be available to be downloaded in the Store within the next 12-24 hours as it has now been published.
The app does have a nominal price of $2.49 with no free trial to help support the server investment by the developers. Currently, only Windows Phone 8 is supported but Venetasoft do plan on bringing Windows Phone 7.x backing in the future (see the FAQ printed below). In addition, at least initially users will only be able to upload 3 photos a day to Instagram via the service in order to ensure that capacity is not overrun, resulting in extraordinary upload times. That number will be increased as more servers are brought online in the coming weeks.
While the status of an official Instagram app for Windows Phone remains elusive, Windows Phone 8 fans will now be able to post to their pre-existing Instagram accounts using the Instagraph client. Later, the developers plan to support Instagram account-creation through the app directly.
The service works by indirectly posting your photos to Instagram via Azure servers, bypassing Instagram’s locked-down API access. Surprisingly, the method they use does not violate Instagram’s terms-of-service, meaning we do not expect this to be “shut down” any time soon (neither do the developers who have a lot riding on this financially, in addition to their reputation).
The app itself, as we detailed in our mini-review, does not allow one to browse or even directly edit their Instagram pics (there are numerous third party apps that already do this on Windows Phone). Instead, it serves merely as a conduit to post to Instagram natively from a Windows Phone 8 device.
The app is powered by Aviary photo editor, which is not the same filter as Instagram but in many ways better (more filters, more editing options) and let’s be honest, it’s not too hard to mimic Instagram’s look.
A full FAQ has also been posted about Instagraph, which should go far in answering some user concerns of the app and service. Keep in mind, this is version 1.0, meaning this is only the beginning.
Regarding versions for Windows Phone 7.x users and more, we can share the following:
- WP7 version is near to being sent to certification
- WinRT version has exited beta release
- WP8 and WP7 new versions with the Registration feature (WinRT will have it at initial release)
- All their (other) Apps are free for a week
We'll update this story when the link is live for the app, though it should not be too much longer now (due to concerns of being overwhelmed, the developers are being extra cautious about hyping the release too much).
Why it is not official Instagram?
- Well, we cannot do anything about it
- We asked them to release a WP version, as we are WP users and enthusiasts too, then we asked for the complete API set, but without success, so we felt abandoned and started working on Instagraph.
Why is it not possible to create a new Instagram via Instagraph ?
- Instagram accounts can only be created directly from iOS and Android devices currently, due to Instagram access restrictions.
- The next Instagraph update adds this feature for WP devices.
Why is it not possible to see post or comment ?
- Instagraph in its first releases will only cover important features missing from other Instagram Apps. You can use other beautiful Apps such as WPGram and Metrogram for this, or even the web browser. Once installed, Instagraph is integrated into the "share" and "edit" menus, so it is super easy to share pictures from other sources or Apps too.
Will a WP7 version be available?
- Yes, and a WinRT version is en-route too
Does Instagraph use Instagram API?
- We don't spoof, sniff, alter or "hack" Instagram calls to their web services in any way.
- Nor have we emulated, reverse engineered, disassembled or altered any Instagram App on iOS or on Android.
- Instagraph is completely compliant with Instagram terms and policies, as we did it legally.
Why do we need to enter username and password on settings page, and not on classic oath web page?
- Instagraph does not use Instagram API,so direct Oath authentication is not needed.
Is privacy preserved?
- Your data is HTTPS encrypted, all network communications between apps and services are SSL secured.
- We delete an image immediately after being successfully submitted to Instagram.
Have you been helped/supported/funded by Microsoft or Nokia to build this App?
- No, Microsoft only certified it to prove Instagraph is legal, secure, and it does not violate your privacy.
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Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.