Instagram alternative Flock releases Android app

Flock, the app from development firm Bump Technologies that makes group photo sharing a breeze, is now available for Android devices.

The Flock app, which first launched on iOS in June, was designed so that users don't have to think about sending photos to family or friends after a get together. It recognises the photos on your phone that were taken with family or friends, then automatically brings all the photos from each person's phone together into a single album and shares it with everyone.

Bump said the Android version of its Flock app has been in development since October. The company didn't simply port over the user interface from the iOS app, but built a new design that is well-suited for the larger screen sizes on many Android devices.

"Android has been growing at unprecedented rates, and even those folks not using Android have friends and family who are, so we expect this launch to make the Flock experience better for everyone," the Bump team wrote in a blog post.

Though Flock only launched a few months ago, users are regularly leveraging it for easier photo sharing at weddings, parties, and other gatherings. Bump said the average Flock user receives around 26 photos every week taken by others.

"These are photos that people otherwise would never see — the other 95 per cent of photos that don't end up being shared on Facebook or Instagram but that hold the real story of our lives," Bump said.

The free app is available for download now in the Google Play app store. It works on devices running Gingerbread (Android 2.3) and above.

Bump is best known for its mobile app of the same name that lets users to share data by simply tapping their phones together. The Bump app has been downloaded 115 million times to date, and gets 100,000 new users every day.

Eighty per cent of users "bump" a friend immediately after installing the app, the company said, adding that Bump users share an average of 2.6 million photos per day.

The positive development in the photo-sharing world comes as leading social media service Instagram is mired in controversy following changes to its privacy policy and terms of service agreement, which critics allege gives it the power to sell user-produced content to advertisers - allegations company CEO Kevin Systrom denies.