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Facebook buying Instagram

In what will undoubtedly be the biggest social media story of the day, Facebook announced that it is buying the popular photo-sharing service Instagram for $1 billion.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the news on his Facebook timeline, of course. In the post, Zuckerberg writes that Facebook needs to be “mindful about keeping and building on Instagram’s strengths and features rather than just trying to integrate everything into Facebook.” Accordingly, Instagram will be kept independent of Facebook, he said.

In his own blog post, Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom wrote:

It’s important to be clear that Instagram is not going away. We’ll be working with Facebook to evolve Instagram and build the network. We’ll continue to add new features to the product and find new ways to create a better mobile photos experience.

In its formal press release, Facebook said the deal is expected to close this quarter.

According to a report on AllThingsD, San Francisco-based Instagram had 30 million users on the iPhone before releasing an Android app last week, which quickly drew in a million more users.