Photo: iPhone screenshot
Picplz, the well-funded mobile photo sharing service, just pushed out an update to its iPhone app. It should be available now in Apple’s App Store.Like Instagram, Picplz lets you take photos, add cool-looking filters to them, and upload them to multiple places, such as Twitter and Facebook.
But this is cool: The Picplz iPhone app update includes a new live filter preview thumbnail system, so you can see how the filters look on your specific photo and not just the generic pair of shoes that Instagram offers. (We beta-tested this feature and it’s nice. We imagine Instagram will copy it before long. Or even offer live filtering while you’re shooting the photo.)
Picplz CEO Dalton Caldwell tells us that the update also includes some performance enhancements, so posting photos and zipping around the app should be faster and smoother.
And because many Picplz users don’t want to post photos — they just want to look at them — there’s a new mode for using Picplz without signing up or logging in to an account, Caldwell says.
Bigger picture, Picplz has been growing nicely — we’ve included its Quantcast monthly numbers below — but it’s still smaller than rival Instagram. (Instagram has announced that it has passed 1 million registered users; Picplz is approaching 200,000.)
It’s true that this is still a tiny, immature market. But social networking services like Picplz and Instagram benefit highly from the network effect, and Picplz can’t afford to be left behind. Look what happened to Gowalla once Foursquare got a lead.
The good news is that, at least in terms of innovation, Picplz and Instagram are still ahead of the big guys like Flickr, Twitter, and Facebook, which haven’t done much to make mobile photo sharing interesting.