The Wall Street Journal [subscription required] is reporting that Apple is preparing a new Photo Sharing service that will tie into its iCloud service. This new photo sharing service will supposedly be introduced during Apple’s WWDC (World-Wide Developers Conference) on June 11th.
The new features, expected to be announced at Apple’s world-wide developer conference beginning June 11, will allow iCloud users to share sets of photos with other iCloud users and to comment on them, these people said… Apple is trying to better compete in the red-hot market for photo sharing, dominated by fast-growing online services such as Facebook Inc. and mobile apps like Instagram—which Facebook has agreed to acquire for $1 billion.
While interesting, there are many details being left out of this report, such as; can people not using iCloud still see your images that you’re sharing? For instance, if I post a photo via Instagram, people can see it via Facebook, Twitter and even on the Android version of the app. If Apple’s photo sharing service is limited to only iCloud users, it may be as pointless as “Ping.” However, if they open the service up and include the ability to share images via other platforms, like Twitter and Facebook and still have the ability to back up photos on iCloud, with possibly a Journal feature, like iPhoto for iOS, then we may see a more serious rivalry.
With Apple adding a photo sharing service to iOS and iCloud, it leaves me wondering, could we see some additions to the stock camera software in iOS 6? Perhaps Apple is ready to add their own mix of filters and effects (they already have some in iPhoto for iOS) to the iPhone, which if built into the stock camera, could drastically cut into Instagram’s users base. Imagine, not having to use a third party camera to achieve those quick filtered photos, you’d be able to access the camera from the lock screen shortcut, snap a picture, add a filter and share it much faster than launching Instagram or any other third party camera app.
While this may be exciting for customers, it may really piss off developers of certain camera applications, not to mention Facebook, who just bought Instagram for $1 billion.