Instagram Holds Sizable Lead Over Path, Picplz and Others Among Facebook Users

The iPhone 4, its high-quality camera and increasing smartphone adoption put the right ingredients in place last fall for an explosion in mobile, photo-sharing apps. With filters, geotagging and easy sharing to Facebook and Twitter, they make it simple to see a running stream of attractive and personal moments from friends.

Plenty of side-by-side comparisons have been written, but who’s in the lead three months on?

We looked through AppData to figure out which mobile photo-sharing apps have the highest number of monthly active Facebook users. Not every user of these apps decides to use Facebook Connect. But because of the social nature of these apps, it is probably a decent proxy for overall usage.

Mobile Photo-Sharing Apps

Name MAU
1. Instagram 271,110
2. Hipstamatic Connect for iPhone 66,582
3. DailyBooth 47,899
4. PicPlz 43,185
5. Path 26,224

Not surprisingly media darling Instagram came out in the lead, with just over a quarter-million monthly actives. Burbn, Instagram’s San Francisco-based parent company, reported in December that the company passed 1 million registered users. Of course, not all of them add their Facebook friends and not all of them stick around. The company may announce a funding round soon, with Benchmark Capital tipped as one potential investor.

Behind Instagram is venerable Hipstamatic, with 66,582 monthly active users, which was on the scene a year earlier. Its parent company, Synthetic Corp., recently relocated to San Francisco to ensure it keeps up with the competition. After that is DailyBooth, which doesn’t exactly belong, because it’s about people taking pictures of themselves instead of moments in their lives. But we threw it in for good measure. It has 47,899 monthly actives.

After that is Mixed Media Labs‘ PicPlz, which has been pumped up as Instagram’s biggest rival. At least among Facebook users, PicPlz, is less than five times the size of its rival, which is also backed by Andreessen Horowitz.

Last, but not least is Path, which comes in at just over 25,000 monthly active users. That’s low but it may be just fine with founder and former Facebook senior platform manager Dave Morin. He has stressed that Path is about a person’s strongest and most intimate connections and the app limits each person to 50 friends.