Windows Phone users who have Instagram envy for sharing their images and photos on the Facebook-owned photo sharing service can breathe a sigh of relief as Nokia EVP Chris Weber has confirmed that Instagram will be coming to the Microsoft mobile platform. In the past, rumors of an official Instagram client coming to Windows Phone, and more specifically to Windows Phone 8, have largely been false starts as neither Instagram nor Facebook has commented on those rumors.
Still, this isn’t the first time that Nokia has been bullish about an official Instagram client coming to Windows Phone. Various regional divisions of Nokia had hinted that much in the past, though Weber is the highest executive from the Finnish-based phone-maker to tease about the photo sharing service coming officially to the platform his company’s phones rely on. Instagram had been hinted to be arriving alongside the Verizon-bound Lumia 928 earlier this summer, but that didn’t pan out.
There are a number of third-party clients for Windows Phone at this time. Many of those clients do not offer the ability to upload photos and only offer Windows Phone users the ability to view photos that are already posted. A few do offer upload capabilities, like the popular Instance client as well as Instagraph, though there features were limited and those clients didn’t offer access to the official Instagram photo filters. Hipstamatic Oggl is another unofficial client.
News of the Instagram client comes just days after the app 6tag was released out of beta and into the Windows Phone Store. 6tag is the first client that had received official blessing from Instagram and comes with full support for official camera filters as well as the ability to upload short video clips, a feature that Instagram recently introduced to compete against Twitter’s Vine service.
It’s unclear when Instagram’s official client will be headed to the Windows Phone ecosystem, and news of a client comes at a conflicting time considering 6tag does offer a great experience, has received the blessing of Instagram, and is already attracting quite a following.
An official client coming to Nokia could be good news as Nokia is focused on the imaging capabilities on its smartphone, including the recently launched Nokia Lumia 1020 smartphone with its 41-megapixel PureView camera that has lossless digital zoom and can take images in low light.
Given that Instagram has been blocking third-party clients from its services, leading to Windows Phone users being shut out of the network, this could be indicative that the photo sharing service is experimenting with its own client. Instagram has since reversed its policies on blocking third-party clients for the time being, though it did not give any reasons why the block was made in the first place.
It’s unclear if when Instagram arrives for Windows Phone, if Nokia will have a time-limited exclusive to the official app for its Lumia line of smartphones. Nokia, which has helped Microsoft attract developers, often reserves a time-limited exclusive for apps for its phones before releasing the apps for download for phones made by rivals. Some of these in the past include ESPN, CNN, and a few notable game titles.
UPDATED: It looks like this is a false rumor. Nokia’s Weber had took to Twitter to clarify the situation:
Seems my comments on Instagram have been misreported. We are still working hard to make it happen, but nothing new to announce. Sorry.