A few days ago social media commentators went a bit mental in regards to this 'new, exciting, app' that Instagram was about to release. Even I was personally excited, especially since the last one they released; Hyperlapse was pretty super-duper.
However, this new rendition is nothing special and is simply something they could have integrated into the existing app or waited to release a 'Instatools' photo editing suite targeted at smartphone users. It is all sizzle and very little steak and the app does exactly what 100 other apps do. Given the one advantage of this app has is its user interface is quite bloody attractive.
So the gist of what the app does is it allows you to combine several of your photos together into a collage, just like: • Photo Grid • InstaCollage • Pic Collage
So why would Instagram release this and not wait until they had something a bit more 'substantial'? Well that's easy; this is just another nail in the coffin of Twitter, Facebook and its other vested interests will continue to release apps and other things similar to this, to complete a full photo-sharing out of the box tool kit. And now you ask,'how do that effect Twitter?'. Well there is a little fact on the sharable side of things that no-one has noticed; it shares and saves pretty much everywhere but it doesn't allow you to post to Twitter.
Now another reason for this timely release is SXSW, (no one cares about this four lettered event here in New Zealand but it is very important). Now what does SXSW have to do with this? Well a little yellow meerkat does... basically that's going to be the next big thing up there with Snapchat, and instagram will be releasing a very similar live streaming app soon, which will fundamentally kill off meerkat, hence the reason for the quick release of "Layout". The reason for this is Facebook has made several attempts to buy Snapchat and they keep getting rejected like a dude in a trench coat from an 80s high school movie.
Now how does this effect my social media marketing in New Zealand? It doesn't, it won't and to be honest most of the big players aren't using Instagram properly in New Zealand. A handful of companies (Meadowlark, Huffer and World) use it well, but most other brands don't even bother and are still concerned with Facebook.
In closing, Layout is pointless and simply a precursor to what's coming next.