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Best Instagram-like apps and their features

  • 8-9 min read
  • March 05, 2021
  • 👍 Rating — 4.6 (1057 votes)

Instagram is one of the most popular social networks in the world and definitely the most used photo sharing & editing mobile application. According to Statista Reports, it has 1+ billion monthly active users (MAUs) and 500+ million daily active users (DAUs) which practically means that every seventh person on Earth downloaded this app. The figure sounds even more impressive if we consider the fact that Instagram was created less than 10 years ago and its Android version was released only in 2012.

Who's the owner of Instagram?
Instagram is a photo and video-sharing social networking service owned by Facebook, Inc. since 2012.

Instagram and other similar applications are amazing platforms that give many new opportunities. There you can express your creativity, share your photos and videos with the world, meet and chat with new people, advertise your business, create unique content for your page, investigate new areas, etc.

Yet, although Instagram maintains market leadership, there are also many alternatives that offer similar functionality. In this article, we’ll take a look at the most interesting Instagram-like apps. So if you’re a startupper thinking about developing your own photo-sharing social media or just a mobile app enthusiast looking for something new to try out, jump right in the list below.


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TOP Apps similar to Instagram

We gathered the latest and the most popular Instagram like apps on the modern marketplaces. They have several additional functions comparing to Instagram and have a huge number of users.


retrika logo

Retrica is an Instagram-like app for Android and iOS platforms. It’s focused mainly on selfies, but you may notice that Retrica resembles Instagram in many aspects and works well with regular (i.e. back camera) photos as well. Like Instagram, it also allows its users to share their photos and videos to friends and community, send private messages, and follow other people. On top of this, Retrica has some awesome functions Instagram lacks. For instance, with this application, you can apply filters to photos made with a front camera before you actually take a shot. Retrica also lets its users make GIFs from collages and videos. So if you’re seeking the closest alternative to Instagram, this app would be the best option for you.

  • Platform: iOS/Android
  • Price: Free


Hipstamatic logo

Hipstamatic is another app similar to Instagram, but it’s not free and available only for iPhones. Just like Retrica, Hipstamatic lets its users apply filters to a photo before or after taking it. The application has a large suite for creating vintage pictures which is its distinctive feature. Even the interface of Hipstamatic looks like the classic camera, so you may get a truly realistic feeling of shooting in an old-school way. For this reason, this app is a great choice for creative people who want to join a retro trend. Although Hipstamatic doesn’t work as a social network, edited photos can be shared via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Tumblr.


flikr logo

Flickr – Written in PHP.

  • Great platform for photography enthusiasts
  • Provide professional photo editing tools
  • Some functions are limited on Mac systems
  • Monthly limit on usable storage for free users

With this app, you can upload the photos from your camera roll to the cloud, edit them by cropping and adding filters, as well as share selected images with the community. As you may see, the app is very similar to Instagram but it also has some additional features. For instance, Flickr is great for organizing the photos since it allows users to create albums. It also works better than Instagram for different sizes and dimensions. All in all, Flickr is one of the best social media apps like Instagram, so we recommend checking it out.

top instagram-like apps


pinterest logo
Discover Vero, a new true social network without ads, data mining and algorithms. The main feature that differs Vero from Instagram is that all posts appear on its feed in chronological order without any special content-ranking algorithm. Vero also has a subscription-based monetization method, and its main advantage is that you will not find any annoying ads within.

  • Platform: iOS/Android
  • Price: Free

Vigo Video

VigoVideo logo
Vigo Video (also known as Flipagram) is an Instagram-type app that was created specifically for digital storytelling. It allows its users to craft short fun videos by applying different filters and adding music, stickers, and other effects.
On top of this, Vigo Video is a social media, so you can also share your videos and interact with other people with the help of this app. It’s a really awesome product to try out for everyone who is fond of Instagram stories but not so into taking photos.


snapchat logo
Snapchat snaps daily. Like Instagram stories, photos, and videos shared via Snapchat are temporary. They are automatically deleted after all recipients view them, or if added to a story, after 24 hours. Snapchat users can also create group stories or contribute their snaps to someone else’s story if they are located in a specific place. In addition, the app has many fun filters and lenses, chat, as well as a bunch of other functions. Some users even believe that there are too many of them, but we think it’s just a matter of taste.


VSCO is another one popular application for iOS and Android. It has similar to Instagram functions – registration step, creating an account with an avatar, and the ability to ost photos and videos. This app has advanced features of photo processing. There you can not just post your pictures but just improve it. It has a large number of filters for free as well as paid ones. Also, you change the light, contrast, and colors of the pictures, adding some new elements to make them creative and unique. Also, you can make photos or videos with help of VSCO using the inside camera and post at once.

  • Platform: iOS/Android
  • Price: Free


pinterest logo
Pinterest is a really amazing web and mobile application. Usually, this platform is used to recreate creative ideas and inspiration about various things – events, traveling, ideas for photo or video, style and fashions, home interior, and many other topics. There you create your personal account, create and complete boards by certain topics, and pin pictures to these boards. It is a perfect place to inspire yourself for doing something great.


pinterest logo
A worldwide online photography network where over 15 million creatives discover and share incredible photos, gain global exposure, and get paid for their work.

  • Platform: iOS/Android
  • Price: Free


dispo app

The motto of this app is “Live in the Moment” and it is named one of the most serious Instagram competitors in 2021. It took a week for Dispo to gain an enormous number of users and get to the top 5 most downloaded apps in the App Store. But what makes it so unique? Is it just a copy of Instagram with a new algorithm? No, it is rather a breakthrough.
It’s concept is to post picture not right here and right now, but take a shot and wait till 9:00 of the next day till it gets posted. No editing, no unrealistic color correction, just real pictures as they are posted the next day. The idea is to make you get back to the times when we all enjoyed analogue photography.
Like Clubhouse that became a buzzword of this year, Dispo let’s you join it via invite and you have only 20 of those per day.

9 Best Instagram-like Apps in 2021

Recommended Sites Platform Ratings Released Free Sensor Score
1. Retrica iOS|Android 4.72 2012 Yes 86/100
2. Hipstamatic iOS|Android 4.76 2009 $4.99 67/100
3. Flickr Web|iOS|Android 4.43 2009 Yes 74/100
4. Vigo Video iOS|Android 3.87 2017 Yes 70/100
5. Tumblr Web|iOS|Android 4.00 2009 Yes 88/100
6. Snapchat iOS|Android 4.72 Yes 8/100
7. Imgur Web|iOS|Android 4.72 Yes 8/100
8. TikTok iOS|Android 4.70 2014 Yes 100/100
9. Topiks iOS|Android 4.72 Yes 36/100

Features for building Instagram-like app

1. Account

Every new member is authorized and create a personal account, it can be possible via email or any other convenient way. It is preferable to add a possibility of login via popular socials like Twitter or Facebook.

2. Editing profile

  • adding personal data
  • editing personal data
  • removing personal data

3. Publications

  • uploading pictures taken in the app or chosen from the gallery
  • mentioning people, adding tags, geolocation, other accounts

4. NewsFeed 

  • subscribing
  • liking
  • commenting
  • saving favorite posts
  • responses to stories

5. Socializing

  • sharing the posts
  • inviting friends from Facebook

6. Image processing

  • changing the size
  • changing the slope
  •  adjustments
  • putting on various filters

7. Geolocation feature

  • put the geolocation of the picture when posting
  • determining current geolocation and adding it to the post
  • Geofencing Solution

8. Direct messages

There is no need to chat with people in the comments under the post. A direct message is a great option for meeting new people and business cooperation.

9. Notifications

Notifications about your friends’ recent posts and stories, messages, likes, and comments.

10. Smart Search

  • by username or full name
  • by tags
  • by post or account description

Technologies used for Instagram like app

Instagram uses a various number of different technologies, some of which may also be applicable in your startup. Instagram’s user app (front-end) is written in React Native, a cross-functional language compatible with both iOS and Android operating systems. For the back-end (server-side), Instagram uses Python (Django framework) and HTML5.

Among Instagram coding languages and frameworks are:

  • JavaScript
  • Python
  • React
  • React Native
  • Java
Related post
Take a look at our holistic Guide on how to choose the technology stack for your social media project.


As you may see, the market is indeed saturated with apps similar to Instagram. But does this mean that there is no room for new picture posting and media sharing applications? Of course, no. The success of apps like Instagram just shows us that mobile users love taking beautiful photos and share them with friends and other people. So if you have an awesome idea of an app that you believe will be even better than Instagram, go ahead. Believe it or not, but there are good chances you may become a creator of the new number-one photo-sharing application in the world.


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Ivanna is a Content Marketing Manager of GBKSOFT passionate about tech advancements, marketing, and startups. Her dream is to make the virtual world a better place with the help of a written word.
Alex Phell - Ph.D., Entrepreneur & Blogger


I'm a leading expert in our marketing department with tech education and Ph.D. degree in building science. LinkedIn | Twitter | Expert Bio
Leave a comment

Comments (11)

Jan 12, 2021 at 6:26 AM

Nice job!! keep up the good work. I like product photography with Instagram, I know that there are several other Instagram-related applications, but each has unique features, which are more or less handy for any person.

Aug 24, 2020 at 5:01 AM

Great article. However, one of the biggest competitors to Instagram is left off, that’s is Topiks app topiksapp.com! I’m surprised it’s not here.

Alex Pedchenko - Ph.D., Entrepreneur & Blogger
Aug 27, 2020 at 4:38 PM

Thanks! Added

Nov 15, 2020 at 11:41 AM

How many users are on Topiks app?

Jul 12, 2020 at 6:10 AM

Not a bad article but equating teenagers with millennials (in the description of Tumblr) makes it sound very dated and out of touch, as if it were written by an aloof boomer. All millennials are mid twenties to late thirties. Literally all of them.

Jun 20, 2020 at 10:21 AM

Hey I am searching for months about an application but I couldn’t find it can U help me?

Oct 04, 2019 at 1:46 AM

You missed lots of real alternatives. I think the analysis done here is pretty no sense

Alex Pedchenko
Oct 04, 2019 at 10:33 AM

Your suggestion?
We are based on the most popular solutions.

Sep 15, 2019 at 4:49 PM

There are many other apps that can replace Instagram, but each one of them has specific features, more or less convenient for every user. I also wrote an article with many other apps that can help to build a brand and get collaborations.

Sep 01, 2019 at 1:34 PM

Thank you Ivanna, I share your thoughts that in the photo-sharing industry there is will space for Instagram clones, but maybe in different niches


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