It was announced yesterday that Facebook had bought Instagram for *Dr Evil pinky at the ready* 1 billion dollars, a move seen by many as very left field. In fact many users began to jump the Instagram ship. So, the real $1billion question is –  what’s the true value and motivation behind Facebook’s purchase?

For those who don’t know, Instagram is a smartphone app that lets you take pictures and give them cool retro camera effects. You then upload these photos to your Instagram account to be shared with your other followers – so it’s basically a social media app for cool looking photos. The app is also set up to link into your Facebook account and post your photos there, so the move by Facebook may not seem so ridiculous…but is it worth $1 billion?!

This move appears to some commentators  to be the first step to another boom and bust – the bubble is set to burst again. With purchases at this extreme price, it’s hard not to agree.

Facebook say they are not going to inter-fear with Instagram (how can you really – it only has about 13 employees) and this may be a good move – why change what’s working; 30 million users are already signed up.

People are using Instagram to post (and host) their photos over Facebook, so maybe Facebook’s aim is to defeat its own paranoia about loosing a key part of peoples user data. That could be worth $1billion to Facebook whose aim is to be ‘the’ integral to the workings of the internet (in fact, I believe Zuckerberg wants it to be the web).

So expect to see people being tagging in Instagram pictures, streams of friend comments, and drunken nights out now looking arty and retro. It’s an interesting move by Facebook and one to watch…they’ll be buying Draw Something next….