Hashtag no filter: Instagram today revealed it now has 600 million users.
The photo- and video-sharing app has been on a rapid growth trajectory, adding 100 million accounts in just the past six months. In a blog post today announcing the new total, the Facebook-owned company said that much "has changed this year, but the Instagram community and the diversity of expression it provides has remained consistent."
Much has changed in the last six years as well. Check out this timeline that shows its rapid ascension in the digital space:
• Oct. 6, 2010 – Instagram founded
• Dec. 21, 2010 – 1 million users
• Sept. 26, 2011 – 10 million users
• April 9, 2012 – 30 million users
• Nov. 6 2012 – 80 million users
• Feb. 26, 2013 – 100 million users
• March 25, 2014 – 200 million users
• Dec. 10, 2014 – 300 million users
• Sept. 22, 2015 – 400 million users
• June 21, 2016 – 500 million users
• December 15, 2016 – 600 million users
While no one knows exactly what's driving the massive and seemingly unending growth of the platform, an array of new features has likely helped. This week, it began allowing all users to stream live video for as long as an hour via its Instagram Stories feature, which debuted just four months ago. And on Wednesday, it added a feature to let users secretly save other users' posts to a private folder on their profile.
The company has recently added extra safety tools as well. In September, it began letting users hide inappropriate comments based on certain key words and phrases, and last week it began letting users disable comments on photos altogether. Many of the latest features—such as Stories and disappearing direct messages—place the app in increasingly close competition with Snapchat.
The total number of advertisers on Instagram has also been on the up and up. In September, the company announced it had 500 million advertisers within a year of launching its advertising API—a sharp jump from the 200 million it had in February 2016.