In a way I feel like posting this now is a bit pointless as it’s probably been discussed a million times everywhere. And perhaps your conclusions are similar. But here it is. Flickr is likely to become cool again. There, I said it.
OK, it’s clearly been helped by the whole Instagram saga, but Yahoo! is at least (and at last) using the momentum to rescue what was once the world’s leading photo-sharing community.
The service everyone (including me) has been criticising for its inability to reinvent itself, update its ancient functionality and compete with the likes of 500px or Instagram, has now – in less than a week – become hot again. At least for mobile users.
First, the new iOS app was released. The completely revamped Flickr app – clearly targeting mobile users used to editing, applying filters and sharing on the go – has received largely positive reviews. Win number one.
Then the whole Instagram ToS disaster made many abandon Instagram in a hurry and join – or at least consider – Flickr whose ratings had only just gone up. Win number two in the bag.
Less than 48 hours later Flickr – by coincidence? – releases an updated version of its recently released iOS app. The update introduces the ability to find Facebook and Twitter followers more easily, and share images on Facebook. Third win in a week for a service which had remained unresponsive for years cannot be ignored.
And people clearly noticed. I have since then received endless notifications of new people joining – and actively using – Flickr.
Then, last night, Flickr surprised every user – whether free or paid – with a free 3-month Pro licence. Regardless of whether this was planned as part of Yahoo!’s (new) strategy, or introduced in response to last week’s event (I hope it’s the latter), this is likely to entice even more disgruntled Instagrammers and give those considering abandoning Flickr a reason to stick around for a bit longer.
Now all we need to make Flickr cool again is a refreshed desktop version. (You *are* working on it, Yahoo!, aren’t you?!)