BlackBerry offers a few social media apps preinstalled on the Passport and other BB10-devices. Amongst Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and LinkedIn (and WhatsApp, downloadable on BlackBerry World) one big and important service still doesn’t offer an official BlackBerry app. Instagram has over 300 million active users and still – if you are using BlackBerry – you have to either use the apk via Android Runtime or you get a native BB10 Instagram client.
First of all, there are a few issues you will come across when you’re using the APK. First thing is: the current version you’ll get via Snap won’t let you log in (at least if you haven’t used a Facebook Account to sign up for Instagram – I’ve heard that it is possible but the following is almost bullet proof) and you can’t even get it via the Amazon App Shop. You have to get an older APK of Instagram. The version I am using is 6.1.0 and it works just fine. I’ve uploaded it to my Dropbox so you can get it easily here. Just download it and install it et voilà: you can log in and use a full functional Instagram!
But there are some more issues. Not only is the Android App a bit slow and not-integrated into the OS (except as share option when you want to share a picture) it’s not very good for viewing your Instagram feed either. You might think that on the square screen of the Passport the square images will fit just perfectly but don’t forget the bars on top and bottom. Even if you disable the “back” key in favour of a not always well working gesture and even if you use the Tablet UI you still cannot see the whole image at one glance. All these issues are solved with the following app. But wait! That doesn’t mean that you won’t need the Android version anymore!
The App I am talking about is called iGrann and it is advertised as the first BB10 native Instagram client that you can get for free. You can easily download it from BlackBerry World. And if you either want pictures to use the whole width of the screen (Modern) or if you want them to be a little bit adjusted to see the whole thing (Polaroid) it shows you definetly more than the Android version. It is also better integrated into BB10. You can choose between two Themes: Dark and Bright; and it uses the UI design of BlackBerry. It also offers you a slide show for the recent posts from your feed. And on top of all of that: it is very fast! So it is best for daily surfing and pic-exploring. Especially on mobile data not only does it load fastly it also saves you data because it uses a lower quality for pictures (at least in Polaroid mode) and you can disable preloading videos.
If you want the full quality image, you can just press on the pic and hold down and save the picture. You can even “regrann” it (like “reblogging” on Tumblr). I haven’t tried that out yet but I guess it just reuploads the picture and the description.
There is one thing I wouldn’t use iGrann for: uploading pictures. If you’re switching from an iPhone you’ll have to say good bye to open app > new photo > snap > type > boom. Because you won’t get that speed out of the Passport (just the auto focus takes enough time to kill it). Although iGrann might be fast enough the results I got (and many other iGrann users) is pixely images and a lack of social connection: It just offers Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare. You won’t get your beloved filters either. So I personally suggest to use iGrann for browsing and following and everything else but for uploading new pictures that you want to tag properly and enjoy in full quality with all the filters you clashed on them and that you can share on Tumblr, Flickr, Foursquare, Facebook and Twitter and that you can properly add to your Photo-map with all your already self-added places… use the Android App for this.
One thing before you comment: No, I haven’t checked out if these issues still exist in the Pro-Version that you can get. And I have checked the quality of an iGrann-upload with the original Android App that shows you the HQ images and there it didn’t have a good quality. If you had a different experience or if you know how to solve this issue make sure to leave a comment below!
Since both apps are free to use just try them out yourselves!
I missed the fact that there is an Update for iGrann that promises a better Image quality.