After Instagram changed it’s terms of service I, like many others, starting searching for an alternative. For me it’s not about being paid for my photos it was about how my photos could be used in a way that might misrepresent me. I'm using Starmatic and Eye’Em but I have not made a firm decision on which app and social network works for me. One app that has potential is Via.me. The app is available for both iOS and Android OS.
Like Instagram the app is free. Creating an account was easy using your Twitter or Facebook account. Once linked to these two social media accounts you can find which of your friends have accounts on Via.me or invite your friends to join the service.
The app's layout isn't unlike Instagram's however Via.me isn't only a photo service. The camera button allows you to take a new photo or video or sound capture. When I pondered that for a bit I realized that Via.me is like Tumblr. You van even do text only posts.
The feed tab shows you content that has been uploaded by people you are following. You can show your appreciation for a photo with the like button or leave a comment. The repost button is similar to a Tumblr's reblog feature.
The Explore button allows you to see the entire unfiltered Via.me media stream or enter a keyword to filter. Again, this reminds me of Tumblr.
The activity button shows you the activity related to your profile -- comments or likes on your photos, new followers etc.
The profile tab is where you can view the content you've posted to your profile as well as connect to any existing Facebook and Twitter contacts.
One thing that was not clear until I visited the Via.me web site is that a public profile page had been created for me. This is a public sharing service. There is no way to post private photos. That makes sense to me. If you want to keep your photos private why upload them in the first place? sharing with a limited group of people can be accomplished with email or via a password protected blog.
One limitation of Via.me is that sharing options are limited to your public profile, Facebook and Twitter. This is more limiting than most photo sharing apps such which also allow sharing to Tumblr and Flickr. This one limitation is keeping me from making Via.me my default Instagram replacement. This might not matter to you are willing to have Via.me replace you Tumblr. There is also no easy way to embed Via.me into a WordPress blog. There were several apps that allowed me to do this with my Instagram images.
Via.me isn't what I want in a photo sharing app. I'm still on the look out for the "perfect" app. Via.me is easy to use, has an active (but not large) community, and a few external social sharing options. However, the lack of integration with my WordPress blog is holding me back.