Instagram has just announced a significant milestone – 300 million users. The company says that its user base now shares over 70 million photos and videos every day and CEO Kevin Systrom says that 70 percent is international.
Alongside this milestone announcement, Instagram is also unveiling a few changes to the app.
First off, the company is finally making the long-overdue move to start verifying users. The verification will come in the form of blue badges beside usernames, and will let you know that the account you're following is the actual account of the celebrity or brand in question. Twitter, Facebook, and even Google+ have all had verification for some time now – so it's about time Instagram jumped on board.
And as is the deal with those other social networks, Instagram is not taking verification requests. "Right now, only some public figures, celebrities and brands have verified badges. It's not currently possible to request a verified badge," says the company.
Also, as Facebook and Twitter have done in the past, Instagram is making a move to permanently delete fake and spam accounts. According to the company, your follower count may suffer because of this move – but it shouldn't be a huge deal.
Finally, as more people join, keeping Instagram authentic is critical—it’s a place where real people share real moments. We’re committed to doing everything possible to keep Instagram free from the fake and spammy accounts that plague much of the web, and that’s why we’re finishing up some important work that began earlier this year.
We’ve been deactivating spammy accounts from Instagram on an ongoing basis to improve your experience. As part of this effort, we will be deleting these accounts forever, so they will no longer be included in follower counts. This means that some of you will see a change in your follower count.
Most of you won’t see any impact. If you’re one of those who will see a correction, you will receive a notification in the app directing you to additional information.
Instagram's impressive user growth comes as the company is making a very serious push to become the next big advertising space.