Instagraph and Metrogram updates instigate mutual integration

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Instagraph, an Instagram uploader app, has been updated to version, adding support for integration with popular Instagram browsing app Metrogram. Other updates include the ability to register for an Instagram account within the app, additional border options when uploading photos, and the ability to add and view comments via an embedded-in-the-app version of the Instagram mobile site.

In order to facilitate this integration Metrogram has also been updated. Version 4.0 adds the necessary enablers for other apps to integrate with Metrogram, and also returns Instagraph's compliment by adding integration with Instagraph. Other updates include a design refresh, the ability to pin a tag or user to the Start Screen, additional profile options, and the introduction of a semi-offline mode.

Metrogram arguably provides the best Instagram browsing experience on Windows Phone, while Instagraph currently provides the only API-free way of uploading to Instgram (therefore potentially less liable to being blocked by Instgram), so combined the two apps are a powerful combination, able to provide a near-complete Instagram experience.

It also means both apps and are better positioned to to compete against other third party Instagram clients, such as Itsdagram. It's fair to say using two apps, rather than one, is not an ideal user experience, despite both developer's hard work in providing smooth-as-possible transition between the two respective apps, but it works better than you might think, thanks in part to the effort that has gone into ensuring the transitions between the respective apps are as smooth as possible..


Instgraph's integration with Metrogram takes the form of a number deep links to key views within the Instagram browsing app, such as the feed view, which shows you the latest Instagram uploads from people that you are following, and the followers view, which shows a list of people following you on Instagram. 

Metrogram's integration with Instagraph takes the form of a top level toolbar option ("post") that link to Instagraph to upload a new photo to Instagram. There's also an entry in the sharing menu entry that lets you re-post pictures viewed in Metrogram to Instagram using Instragraph. 

Both sets of integration are enabled by Windows Phone 8's app2app custom URI association, which we described in yesterday's post on MetroTube. These protocols allow for limited information to be passed between apps. For example, Instagraph's URI associations include the ability for third party apps to kick of an Instagram upload by linking to the app with this URI: instagraph:post?Name={filename}Caption={string}', where filename is the location of a locally stored file and string is a text description.

Instagraph Windows Phone Store description:

The first Windows Phone Instagram™ sharing App.

Upload your pictures to Instagram™ directly from your Windows Phone device!

New in version 2.0:

- Metrogram integration: followers, following, search, liked, profile and more!
- select border color in crop page
- add comments from web feeds

Instagraph can be downloaded from the Windows Phone Store. It is currently priced at £0.79. The app is also available for Windows Phone 7.5, but this version does not include the Metrogram integration as it relies on APIs specific to Windows Phone 8. 

Metrograph Windows Store description:

Sign in to your INSTAGRAM account and browse Recent updates from people your are following, Popular and Nearby photos. Like, Comment, Share or Save photos, see who else likes them and what people think about. Look at photo owner's profile, see his photos and follow him if you want.

New in version 4.0

- New Design
- Post photo through Instagraph
- Edit/Delete account
- Generate user's avatar
- Pin user/tag to start screen
- Block user
- More user/photo loads automatically at the end of the list
- Comment reply
- comment preview in recent feed
- Semi-offline mode

Metrogram is a free download from the Windows Phone Store and is available for both Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8. As with Instgraph the integration features are only available in the Windows Phone 8 version.