Facebook/Instagram Acquisition Inches Closer With UK’s Office Of Fair Trading Giving The Thumbs Up.
Facebook’s quest to hoover up the most popular photo filter/photo sharing application and social network, Instagram, is one step closer today thanks to the UK’s Office Of Fair Trading giving it the thumbs up and paving the way for legal proceedings to continue. The announcement states that after going over the proposed deal and acquisition, allowing the two to become one won’t cause any type of unfair practices in regards to sharing photos on Facebook or using Instagram as there are already plenty of similar competing services offered on the myriad of mobile platforms’ app stores.
What remains to be seen is just how Facebook handles Instagram and its users should the deal finally pass. Running two social networks doesn’t seem like a long-term ideal for Facebook. Another oddity in the mix is Facebook’s own “Facebook Camera App” which does largely the same thing Instagram does. The only difference of course is that the Camera app isn’t a standalone service as it (quite obviously) uploads to and piggy backs off of Facebook.
Will Facebook eventually shutter Instagram and integrate the service or at the very least some of the features into Facebook? Shutting down Instagram would no doubt cause a lot of hurt feelings with dedicated users and perfectly illustrates why big mergers such as this aren’t always as rosey as they seem. Or will Facebook continue running both networks as separate entities each with continuing updates and feature additions? We’d like to think the latter option is being considered. But given the nature of how acquisitions work (and the whole Sparrow/Google thing still fresh in our minds) we’re not holding our breath for a positive (for users) outcome.