If you're a bit bored by the usual filters on Instagram, the photo-sharing service is about to get a huge upgrade in the video department. Facebook has acquired the animated-picture platform Giphy for a reported $400 million.
What does this deal mean? According to Axios, which first reported on the deal, Giphy "is expected to retain its own branding, with its primary integration to come via Facebook's Instagram platform."
According to a post on Facebook, the company plans to integrated the Giphy librabry into Instagram and its other apps. As Facebook notes, 50% of Giphy's traffic already comes from the company's apps and half of that total comes from Instagram. So weaving Giphy into the Instagram app seems like a logical next step.
Welcome to the family! For those wondering, GIPHY will continue to operate its library and relationships with content and API partners, so if you use GIPHY on other platforms, nothing will change. https://t.co/DR1e3wCrn9 pic.twitter.com/U6XWAohtzUMay 15, 2020
We know what you might be thinking. Will Giphy as we know it cease to exist? Facebook claims that "people will stlll be able to upload GIFs" and developers and API partners will continue to have the same access to Giphy's APIs."
As CNBC notes on its own report about the Facebook Giphy acquisition, Apple uses Giphy images in iMessage, and both Slack and Twitter also integrate Giphy with their own apps. So it will be up to Facebook to alleviate the concerns of Giphy's other partners.
The biggest obstacle to Giphy integration in Instagram could be the federal government. The deal will likely come under scrutiny from the FTC due to its sheer size.
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Mark Spoonauer is the global editor in chief of Tom's Guide and has covered technology for over 20 years. In addition to overseeing the direction of Tom's Guide, Mark specializes in covering all things mobile, having reviewed dozens of smartphones and other gadgets. He has spoken at key industry events and appears regularly on TV to discuss the latest trends, including Cheddar, Fox Business and other outlets. Mark was previously editor in chief of Laptop Mag, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc. Follow him on Twitter at @mspoonauer.