Instagram Launches ‘This Is Now’ Service

Instagram has launched This Is Now, a new service that allows users to “see the world through Instagram’s eyes,” according to CNet.

With This Is Now, users choose one of five major cities (New York City, London, Sydney, Tokyo, or São Paolo) and are instantly treated to a real-time visualization of photos taken in that city.

Marcio Puga, Mauricio Massaia and Per Thoresson created This Is Now using Instagram’s API to access their photos.

The service’s website describes the project as,

“a visual composition which uses real-time updates from the ever popular Instagram application based on users geo-tag locations. The tool streams photos instantly as soon as they are uploaded on Instagram and captures a cities movement, in a fluid story.”

The number and speed of the photos will depend on the local time of the city the user chooses. If the city is sleeping, there will be less photos updating less frequently. If the city is awake, there will be more photos updating more frequently.

The service also allows you to see how many people are viewing a city at any given moment. If you click the “What is this” link at at the top of each city’s page, you’ll see a message like the following:

“So far, [Number] photos have been seen and [Number] photos have been clicked through [City]-now, by a total of [Number] people. These people normally spend an average of [Time] watching the activity before they find something better to do. You’ve been already watching it for [Time].”

Clicking on the photo takes you to Instagram’s website to view the full version, who uploaded it, and any comments made on the photo.

Instagram recently surpassed 80 million users, and while those profiles are already public, some users might be wary of the fact that This Is Now makes their photos more readily available to others.

This Is Now has updates for five cities

What do you think of This Is Now?