Twitter launches new photo filters in war with Instagram

Meanwhile, Instagram updates with ‘Willow’ filter


Twitter has launched its own photo filters and editing options as it continues to compete with social media photo sharing app Instagram.

The Twitter update allows users to edit photos and add one of eight filters without using a secondary app. It looks like this:


At the moment, the update is available for Android operating systems only, and is expected on iOS soon. In 2011, Twitter allowed users to attach a photo directly to a tweet, but there was no way to edit that photo in Twitter until now.

The move comes after Instagram (which was purchased by Facebook earlier this year) announced that it would no longer show photo “cards” taken with its app in tweets. Instagram users still have the option of sharing their photos on Twitter, but now users will have to click through a link to see a photo, rather than seeing it directly in the tweet.

Also Monday, Instagram launched its own update, which improves the camera portion of the iOS app. It adds a grid function for taking pictures, and a brand new black-and-white filter called “Willow.”

According to The New York Times Technology writer Nick Bilton, Twitter’s decision to add its own photo editing comes in an effort to get its “Very Important Tweeters” — mainly celebrities — to take photos within Twitter, rather than using another app and sharing through Twitter.

For a tutorial on how to use the new Twitter photo features, here’s Phil, who has filled his phone with photos and is ready to share:

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