Instagram's real appeal is the closed nature of its product—the fact that it's walled off by default, with no open browsing of user photos by just anyone, and before its Android release, built a brand off of being iPhone only, private, and that thing that a select few used to take photos on their phone and then, for fear that no one would see it, pushed it over to Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Flickr, or anywhere else that people actually hang out. Aside from design and marketing, there's little that makes the app special to this writer. (Your view may differ, and if so, that's cool. You should use Instagram!)
It doesn't bother with a social network on the back-end (and honestly, why bother if your friends are all on Twitter or Facebook and you're going to send the photo there anyway) which we can't fault them for. The real focus of Pixlr-O-Matic is the filters, the borders, the tweaks, and all of the changes you can make to your photos. In the end, you get over 2 million different permutations and options to make your photos look just right (or all wrong, depending) before you save the finished product to your camera roll or gallery and then share it with your friends.
The Nextdoor mobile app for Android and iOS is a great way for people to keep up with the Joneses, the Kardashians, or anyone else in your neighborhood. Whether you want to make friends with your neighbors; are looking to easily sell your stuff; want to hire a babysitter, house sitter, or dog walker; or get informed about yard sales, what you need may be as close as a neighbor a few doors away. Nextdoor has also become a popular place for posts that alert users to nearby criminal activity and for sharing critical info during an earthquake or flood, for example.
Now to Steemit. They claim to prevent spammers from posting excessively they limit your posts. Want to upload and share some photos or maybe use the connected DTube ,YouTube alternative, to upload a video go right ahead. You will quickly be silenced and forbidden from posting any further unless you are willing to pay. If you become popular this will go away some due to the fact that you will get more people liking your content and it will give you more “steem power” so much like high school if you are popular you can share your opinion, but if you are not be prepared to pay if you want to comment on that post. This along with the fact that 80-90% of the content is about crypto currency and people talking about Whales while telling minnows to shut up and a two week wait to even set up your account bored me very quickly. It is a horrible platform for anyone other then those who want to eat, think, dream, and talk about crypto 24/7 and who are willing to wait ages to be popular enough to talk about it freely.
Hipstamatic differentiates itself from the crowd of retro-camera apps in four ways. First, it's not free (only one other app on this list is a paid app). Second, it features a nifty old-camera-style user interface—a spitting image of a 1970s Kodak Instamatic camera. Third, it offers group albums. And fourth, it lets you apply effects before snapping a photo, so you can preview how it will look.
There’s no end-to-end encryption on either platform’s private messaging at the moment, and to be fair there isn’t for Twitter or Facebook either (though Facebook is rumored to be looking into it for their Messenger). Both Mastodon and Diaspora are built on the idea that the conversations happening are meant to be public, so the privacy emphasis is on keeping user data in user ownership and out of advertiser’s hands, not keeping conversations out of the public eye.
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Something that makes SmugMug an excellent Instagram alternative is the ability to download entire galleries so they’re available offline for when your signal isn’t the strongest. This can be a lifesaver, especially if you’re using your account as a professional photographer. You can also share images directly from the app via SMS, email and social media, so it’s not limited to face-to-face sharing.