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Instagram extends olive branch to #6tagram app for Windows Phone, will have their legal consent

Developer Rudy Huyn has been hard at work recently on his forthcoming Instagram client dubbed #6tagram for Windows Phone. Earlier this week, the popular photo service altered their API for “security reasons” throwing a monkey wrench in a planned release and forcing Huyn to have to re-think the app logic for getting access to their network. Later, Huyn confirmed that he had indeed “cracked” the new API and posting of videos and photos to Instagram would be doable for his app.

Today, a new wrinkle has happened that is effecting the timely release of #6tagram: Instagram itself, who have reportedly made direct contact with the developer.

But instead of the usual legal threats, the company has worked out a compromise whereby Huyn will send the app for prior approval to the Store, making sure the app “checks out” from a legal (and technical) standpoint. The app won’t be “official” but it will get to wear the title “Supported by Instagram” on its sleeve, making this app the first fully featured Instagram client for Windows Phone that has Instagram’s blessing (or rather, they will look the other way).

We spoke with Huyn who confirmed the story as legitimate:

“I will send them my app, to make some tests and we will work together to check all the legal things, they seem to like the app”

That is certainly a turn around the for the company who has since pulled back those earlier API changes, allowing other third party apps like the popular Instance to continue working unabated. While the company may not have any immediate plans for an official app, their olive branch to Huyn and the Windows Phone community is certainly refreshing. Indeed, we could argue that whatever Huyn produces it will be of higher quality and more feature packed than anything official (see his Wikipedia app for Windows Phone, for example, which is officially sanctioned by the Wikipedia foundation).

The only downside to the offered Instagram support is it will cause a slight delay in publishing the app. The flip side to that is it will give Huyn extra time to work on his creation, including adding a tilt-shift effect. Once released, #6tagram will sport the original Instagram filters, video and photo uploading, and all of the features that an Instagram app should have to make it unofficially-official. In a recent video, posted above, Huyn has demonstrated some of those features in action.

Now with Instagram’s consent, we can be sure that Windows Phone users will have a solid, reliable and non-controversial Instagram client for the foreseeable future. That's huge news.

Update 2PM ET: At this point, Instagram won't be providing technical support to Huyn, meaning the app is still on its own and subject to API difficulties, should they arise. Instead, Instagram is merely giving it a pass/fail from a legal standpoint. While not a slam dunk, it does show a new level of cooperation and detente with the Windows Phone community as legally speaking, they could do a lot to block this app. It will be curious to see in the coming weeks what changes, if any, Instagram asks for within the app, including the name.

Daniel Rubino
Executive Editor

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

202 Comments
  • Very Cool instagram
  • Yes, I don't use these types of apps, but it is reassuring to see a major player compromising to the benefit of WP users. Google...are you seeing how you too can play nice?!?
  • Don't waste your energy they are deaf
  • Then let's hope they can at least read ;)
  • Or the fact that Facebook now own Instagram?
  • Bullshit, only a (dangerous) marketing move from that french guy :)
    Incredible how all bloggers believed to this without any evidence...No t a good day for WP information.
  • How is one guy pushing out apps every quarter and larger companies still holding back?
    It looks great, now make 6book, and fix our Facebook issues...
     
  • You really have to wonder!!!!
  • No need to wonder! They flat out dont want to.  Plain and simple.  I dont want to hear excuses about limited resources. 
  • 6book? Not a bad idea, not at all! Rudy Huyn, please consider it!
  • +1 :)
  • +1
  • 1+++
  • Finally they decide to show some love.
  • Not really. This is more like a "ok, I won't screw you guys over for no reason". If they showed some love, they'd build there own app. 
  • I think they just want to look at his code...lol
  • They switched up there API. He found a way around so now they want to look at the app so they can find a way to block it and others. And there excuse is let's affirm the legality of the app. Lol .. doesn't MS own shares of FB and IG being owned by FB.
  • Bullshit,  only a (dangerous) marketing move from that french guy :)
    Incredible how all bloggers believed to this without any evidence...No t a good day for WP information.
     
  • Daniel, does Rudy have their blessing to charge for his app? That seems like it would be the issue for them, but maybe I'm missing something.
  • His charges are to cover his server costs, not for profit, so yes.
  • Cool. Thanks.
  • Well..., a bit of profit (money to eat (like he said) xD)
  • Then what will happen to Instance.
  • Personally, due to the lates API incident with Instance vs. Instagram I switched to photoplay... and couldn´t be happier. Instagrams refusal to do anything for the WP community tells something about the companys way to handle things. So a new emerging and rivalling (and maybe even better) service like photoplay could make them think twice in the future. Monopoly is always bad for the customer, be it Nokia, Samsung, Apple, Microsoft or Instagram. 
  • He's already said he's making the app free.
  • +1
  • There are in app purchasses for uploading video.
  • Yes, this was what I was referring to.
  • Woah. Instagram is in a good mood this week.
  • Seems like instagram developers want to steal huyn for improving their idiotic apps on ios,android hence the olive branch,still rudy woot woot woot
  • Everybody! Rudy! Rudy! Rudy!
  • @Azaright...This is exactly what i was thinking, it looks better and seem to be more fluid too, they prob letting him do this by using his app as a reference for future updates from Instagram on their official apps
  • Good to see instagram finally noticing WP.
  • This sounds amazing. I'm no an Instagram user, but it's always good to hear something gr8 is coming to WP. I'm sure it'll be even better than the original app
  • Wow. While I don't believe that Instagram is some big baddie, I have had issue with their reluctance to even acknowledge their is demand for their service on this platform. So.even if they never make an official one, this is a pretty good gesture on their part. And honestly, why not just bring Rudy on and make his app an.official one?
  • +1
  • Because that would be the reasonable thing to do.
  • Now, can we finally put the Instawhine to rest? Btw great job Rudy.
  • +1,020,925,920!
     
    But it won't. The trolls will undoubtedly pop up to cry about it's lack of "officialness" sooner or later.
  • I see what you did there, and I like it!
  • Hey, official ones are free. So non-American people who don't own a credit card would still want an official app.
  • In some European countries, like mine for example, you can also pay via your carrier. I do have a credit card though.
  • Offical apps are free, and I don't have to trust a third party developer with my data. I'd rather cut out the middle man, when ever possible. 
     
    That's just me, though. Some have no problem with third party apps, and that's there preference. 
  • +1
    Quality third-party apps are fine, but I understand your point. This is one of the problems on WP platform.
  • Never would have expected this...and Rudy said on twitter that if this app gets enough recognition it might motivate instagram to OFFICIALLY OFFICIALLY come to WP, and after that all that will be left is snapchat since vine and path have already been announced...any news on snapchat Daniel ;)
  • That's pretty big. Nice work and great for Rudy.
    I wish he'd make a Facebook app...
  • +920
  • It is pretty great for Rudy. I imagine all the other devs working on instagram apps are feeling pretty left out in the cold right now, though.
  • Or, just the messenger app.
  • Messenger is built into the messaging app...
  • Brilliant news. Hopefully we'll see it in the store by the end if the month.
  • rock and roll is dead THIS IS ROCK AND ROLL. all hail the new saviour Rudy. Vive La France!
  • This is good news. Good to see them starting to be more open minded.
  • Cheerios! Anyone wanna instagram some tea and crumpets with me
  • Wow!!
  • will this be only wp8?
  • No, after he will release a wp7x version of 6sec and 6tagram...
  • Like how Instance was suppose work on supporting 7.8 =\
  • disgusting.  It's not even the same dev...
  • sweet thanks
  • As far as im concerned, this confirms that Instagram wasn't working on a Windows phone app like we all assumed.
  • I think I've been saying for months now there was no Instagram app in the works ;) Lots of people wanted to believe though!
  • I know, but for some reason, it became 'a thing' where people in comments section would insist that some Microsoft exec stated that an official Instagram app was on its way.
    It still is 'a thing' for other features, like notification center and such.   Unless Microsoft or Nokia confirms something, and you can back it up with a link and a quote, I would take what anonymous commenters say with an extremely filtered grain of salt.
  • Does Instagram apply filters to grains of salt too?
  • If only the app could use the actual name "Instagram", it would be done.
  • Great news indeed! can't wait for the new app! 
  • Yes!!!!!, the best news so far on 2013 for WP8, I know many of us can't comprehend the importance of Instagram, but having an almost official app, and with their blessing no less, is to me a sign that Windows Phone 8 is OFFICIALLY the third ecosystem, and basically Blackberry is simply falling irreparably behind. Next quarter results should be definitive, either the 10 series of Blackberry gain momentum, or the army of low-value Lumias will have crushed the Canadian company.
    Of course because its obligatory to add some gloom to every positive news about WP8, perhaps this is just Facebook's way of stopping the pestering of the Windows Phone comunity about the release of an official app, simply saying "we're cool with #6tagram" is way easier than developing the app themselves. So perhaps this does'nt hint any important growht of WP, but is just "throwing a bone" at MS and Nokia. We'll wait and see.
  • I understand your exuberance and all that, but you're very wrong. While I'm sure I'm one of, if not THE only person on this site who believes this, but one app does not make or break an entire OS. 
    And with all due respect, you and those that believe otherwise are part of what's wrong with the mobile community as a whole.
    Sorry to go there on you, but it's not just my opinion, but it's something I believe in 100%. 
  • I DON'T believe a single app makes or breaks an OS, but a hell of a lot the 500+ million iOS/Android users do, so you and I must accept we are in the minority, and if WP does not get its act together it will go the way of webOS, and getting its act together unfortunately means appealing to the masses, by way of Instagram and any other fad app that comes along.
  • I have four coworkers (on both iOS and Android) who all say they love my phone, but they would never switch to a platform that doesn't have Instagram support. One app may not make or break, but it can certainly have a huge impact on momentum. Microsoft is doing a decent job advertising the platform, but the quiet question of apps will stop someone upgrading in the phone store from going with the WP handset. Like it or not, Instagram is too trendy to ignore. In short, having an app won't necessarily bring in droves of new customers, but not having one will certainly turn away potential ones.
  • Damn first vine, instagram, and i think snapchat soon.  One man developer for all popular apps...
  • Why can't they make an official app already?! How lazy! 
  • Why can't they make an official app already?! How lazy! 
  • This is HUY-UGE news (funny how the first three in huy-uge is in Rudy's last name) Instagram talked to him about supporting the app. This is closer to Instagram than ever!
  • Wow, you felt compelled to explain your terrible joke? You lose the internet for today. ;)
  • D'; I thought it was a neat play on words.
  • :-D I was just foolin around. :)
  • And so was I! Haha XD
  • Where do people spell huge that way? Its obvious to everyone it's a poor joke at best
  • It's not how to spell it, it's more on pronunciation. It's how you say it!
  • And......hell just froze over
  • I think everyone (especially the "news" sites) are celebrating wayyy to early. He reverse engineered their core competencies with the upload API and especially their filters. I just bet he has to make some trade offs in his app ...
  • This sounds great. Great for Rudy and Windows Phone. 
  • Hows long will this process take so I can change my wife's instance to this instagram supported app. I purchased the instance for her since she made the switch from apple and will pay for this also if it requires. As long as it has all the features as the official I know she will be happy, he will have video as well cause she's been asking about that.
  • Finally!!
  • With all of the press they got from "blocking the many Windows Phone apps," I figured they would eventually warm up to Windows Phone. Good. And I can't wait for the app!
  • Well played, Instagram. You might actually get me to use your service now and I always disliked your service or was 'meh' about it.. NOW DON'T PULL THE SAME CR*P AGAIN.
  • Awesome.
  • I already knew this from Twitter but it's good news indeed. Now...let's just hope they're not using this apparent goodwill gesture as a way to get his app, find out how he cracked the code and subsequently change their API to screw us all again.
  • Hmm... Is this instagrams way of getting out of making an official app?
  • It looks that way to me. They got bad press for blocking and not the best they can do is give consent to this app. Sham in them, why nit make an official app to begin with. This is Microsoft WP not a new no name company.
  • Any chance Instagram will buy this from Rudy and make it official?  Remember the LinkedIn app?  I blieve that's how it worked for that dev.
    Can't wait to download this.  I have loved Instance but this app looks great!
  • Sounds like they should just slap their name on it, give Rudy developer credit and throw him some cash.
  • I would almost bet that's what they try and do. He sends over to FB/Instagram, they test it and if they like it they make him an offer. It seems to be the Facebook MO, see something you like that works buy it and make it your own. Good for Rudy as when they do that its usually a nice chunk of change and a good paying job.
  • I like the way the profile looks! (unlike Instance -- the profiles are a mess)
    And it's fast and very clean looking. Can't wait-
  • Now if only temple fucking run 2 appears in the market.
  • Yeah baby!!
  • This pretty much confirms that there ain't shit coming from instagram officially for anwhile. Asshats!
  • And why would you want them to make an offical one? Their iOS app even sucks. Only a iPhone version and no iPad one. This WP app is light years ahead of what they would release anyway. Having their support for it is a major plus in my opinion.
  • What are the chances we are going see Facebook/Instagram bring Rudy on as a developer and just make his app the official one. Seems to be the Facebook MO, see something you like buy it and make it your own.
  • I hope Rudy is somehow being financially compensated for doing Instagram's work for them.
  • Let's hope it's a good app. Seems like this is a great compromise for borth parties.
  • This is awesome! That aside: Does anyone know what that song is?
  • Well that's a good thing, so Well done Instagram
  • Why is it so difficult for Instagram to release an official app? If it took Rudy several weeks of his spare time - he has a day job - then surely it shouldn't be that difficult for Instagram. It is as if they are being difficult on purpose.
    If they want to be nice, they can now take the easy option, join forces with Rudy and pay him to develop an official app. Surely that makes most sense. I have no doubt that he'll deliver a top notch app.
  •  As Daniel said, this is HUGE news!!! Thank you Rudy Huyn and thank you Instagram for starting to make sense. 
  • Rudy is a blessing to the entire Windows Phone ecosystem. I am glad he did not accept the job offer from one of the "BIG" WP competitior, it takes a lot to reject such an offer. Was it Google? :) Lets give a big bow to Rudy - I support him by installing/buying every app he has published.
  • It was blackberry.....
  • Where did you know BB was trying to 'buy' Rudy for their ecosystem?
  • Because after the Vine betrayal to him (they talked to him but they did not said to him that were plans to release an official app for WP), he said to consider BB as he next move...;)
  • Vine betrayal? Do you mean MS betrayed Rudy by hiding that there is an official vine app in the works?
  • Vine too. Because Twitter asked him how to embebbed videos recently and he teach them...;) You can check his tweets that time.
  • Rudy tweeted it a few days ago .. not sure he mentioned BB by name.
  • He mentioned during his anger about Vine official app
  • Loading Vines.....
  • Facebook app is next!!!
  • MSFT has already developed that app.
  • a very mediocre one... I'm talking about one on par with android or iphones app quality...
  • Well, you just wait. MSFT's FB app is still in very early stage, though, as I have so many issues with it. I'm sure they will hear what you want if you give them feedback as always.
  • Oct. 21st, 2010 was the date WP7 was out, so I think three yrs is not early stages... not for an app like this... :)
     
  • In fact, 6Tagram will be first fully featured Instagram third party client for ANY PLATAFORM that has Instagram’s blessing... Oggl isnt a fully featured Instagram client and, as far as I know, Oggl was the only app until today that recieved the Instagram permission.
  • and on top of that Oggl pays instagram to use their upload API's.
  • Can't wait for this! 
    Hmm, when he was watching the video he uploaded, shouldn't there be a play button rather than pause button when the video is paused? Isn't it always like that with players, the video is paused and you press the play button and it continues.
  • Calm down. Stop complaining.
  • Not complaining, just pointing out :P I'm very happy that we will be getting this!
  • That's the way most players do it, but his way isn't wrong. If you remember from the days of tape players, you would push the pause button and then push it again to unpause. With DV player, they put the play and pause on one button.
  • At last. Thanks for hearing us WP users, Instagram. Now you're supporting us, especially Rudy, to get yourself into our community!
  • Thanks to all the devs, not just Rudy that have endeavoured to give WP an Instagram experience! But particular thanks to Rudy, of course, for attracting the kind of attention from Instagram that will result in them supporting a 3rd party app. Only thing remaining to say is let's hope it's not crippled in any way!
  • I can't wait for this app! Its gonna be so good.
  • 7.8??
  • Always ask this question, never get an answer.
  • That doesn't make sense. If they're checking for legal things how will they allow the upload features?
  • I think Instagram ONLY wants to know how Rudy bypassed their security. It smells too fishy.
  • Rudy, you are to be commended to get the WP on Instagrams map of the potential that we all know our Windows Phone have. Especially now with the 1020. Thank you for your hard work and persistence.
  • For the sake of all of our sanity, can we just call this the "official" instagram app and move on?
    Great job Rudy for producing something that caused Instagram to take notice and give in to a semi-official solution.
  • +100000000000000000000000000
  • Congrats and this is good news. Of course it really peeves me off. I offered the same thing to Kevin Systrom over a year ago with my own Windows Phone app (at the time it was 7) and said Instagram could have approval of the app if they wanted. At the time he wouldn't budge on the API. This is long overdue.
  • This is very interesting. Why would Instagram reach out now when there are already quite a few Instagram apps on Windows Phone? Is Rudy that renowned in the industry? I agree with others, if there is no official Instagram in the works but Instagram is now condoning this unofficial one, why not just make it official? I cannot imagine that the reason there is no official Instagram app is because Instagram doesn't have the resources to make one (I mean, if Rudy can do it by himself, surely Instagram could spare the resources--even if it's just outsourcing the project--to make their own official one), so I thought the lack of an official app was due to another reason (such as that rumor that an exec at Instagram has a grudge against Microsoft). I've never used Instagram so I don't get what the appeal of it is, but I understand it's an important app to many people, and thus, I've been following all the news about Instagram apps (official and unofficial) on Windows Phone for awhile. There seem to be quite a few for some time now, but it wasn't until Instance launched that people seemed satisifed with it (I don't know why the other apps weren't as beloved, probably because they weren't as good), but even now people seem to be more excited about Rudy's version (probably because he has done such a good job developing other apps), but I'm surprised to see Instance getting thrown to the curb. Nevertheless, this is good news. I hope Rudy's app is a huge success. Now, if only he'd change the name.
  • Rudy won Microsoft's official Windows Phone "next app star" contest for his Wikipedia app, so he has respect and a good track record in the industry.
  • Yeah, I remember that, but I didn't know how much recognition that garnered outside of the WP dev industry. I was intrigued by the fact that Instagram offered no such olive branch to any of the other developers of previous Instagram apps (such as Instance), but suddenly did when Rudy said he'd make an app.
  • Easier to let someone else do it than spend money and time on doing it yourself. Plus if they are to do it themselves, they need to hire WP devs and pay them salaries.
  • That's true, but then why not just outsource it? Hell, Microsoft and Nokia would've easily ponied up the cash to develop an official Instagram app (similar to what Microsoft did with the Facebook app), so why isn't Instagram letting Microsoft or Nokia do that but are now suddenly giving their blessing to an unofficial app? Something is amiss.
  • Can we start the "Rudy, rudy, rudy" chants again? 
     
     
  • This is GREAT NEWS for the WP Community.!! ^_^
  • Wow the app looks great!!! Can't wait.
  • Holy sh*t. Great to see major companies recognize good devs. Instance should get the blessings too.
  • You the man Rudy. You the man.
  • This is great news, though, I have a feeling that this will definitely put an end to any plans of an official Instagram client from Instagram.