There’s no denying that Instagram has the monopoly on vintage, filtered photography, and mobile photosharing. Competitors have come and gone, and Instagram is still going strong. That hasn’t stopped the team behind Starmatic from putting together a slick app which is a joy to use.
When you first sign up for an account (you can do so by simply connecting your Twitter or Facebook account), you will be presented to import your Instagram photos, but it’s an entirely optional step. If you decide not to import your photos, you can always change your mind later and access the feature in the app’s settings.
If you’d rather start from scratch, you can take photos from within the app, or add photos from your photo library. Starmatic’s photo-taking interface allows you to use the front and back cameras, turn the flash on and off, and turn on grid guidelines to make sure you get a perfectly composed shot.
When it comes to photo editing, Starmatic offers users 26 filters, as well as a built-in tilt-shift/blur option, and the ability to adjust the image’s brightness. The filters offer a wide variety of vintage and toy camera looks for your photos, and unlike Instagram, you aren’t forced to crop your images into a square format. Once you’ve applied your filter of choice, you can then either simply save the photo to your photo library, or share it with your followers. You can also automatically share your photos on Facebook and Twitter.
All the photos you share will be displayed on your Starmatic profile page. At a glance you can see how many friends and followers you have. You can also add an image as your header, similar to the Facebook header image. Your main profile tab, unlike Instagram, doesn’t feature your most recent images. Instead, your most liked photos are on display, along with your biography and profile photo. Clicking on the number of photos you’ve shared will open up a grid of your images.
Starmatic is similar to Instagram in several ways – it’s a social network that allows you to share your filtered photography with your followers. You can like other users photos and follow them to keep up with their feeds, and can comment on their images. Starmatic, however, takes interaction one step further, allowing you to repost other users photography, in something of a Tumblr-esque way. While third party services, just as Statigram try to offer Instagram users this option, it simply isn’t the same as Starmatic’s easy to use repost button.
Images that are reposted will appear in your feed with a little repost icon in the top right hand corner, and when you open up the actual image, it goes to the original image. This feature will no doubt be appreciated, so that all feedback goes straight to the original photographer.
To find other users to follow, you can check out the featured tab where the most popular photography is posted, or you can opt for the ‘Discover’ tab, where you can search hashtags. Ironically, a lot of the popular hashtags are very Instagram specific.
Another way Starmatic sets itself apart from Instagram is its ease of use, particularly when it comes to viewing photos. Photos are displayed as a grid, and with the app’s infinite scroll feature, you can keep swiping until you find an image you want to open. The process is extremely fluid. Once you’ve opened a photo, whether from the featured page or from an individual’s profile, you can swipe back and forth between photos.
While Starmatic is a slick app, the question that has yet to be answered is, are users still looking for an alternative to Instagram? What do you think? Does Starmatic stand a chance? Let us know in the comments.