Google Buys Instagram Rival Nik as Google+ Passes 400 Million Users

Google logo Plus web siteGoogle has announced it is to acquire imaging platform Nik Software and reports that Google+ now has more than 400 million members (100 million of whom are monthly acitve users), still less than half that of key social networking rival Facebook.

The company said that the team at privately-held Nik, which offers services similar to Instagram, would be joining Google effective September 17. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

While the role Nik’s team will take in Google wasn’t outlined, the deal would likely be used to bolster the company’s web services and social networking operations.

Based out of San Diego and Germany, Nik develops a number of photo editing and imaging tools and plug-ins.

“For nearly 17 years, we’ve been guided by our motto, ‘photography first’, as we worked to build world class digital image editing tools,” Nik said in a statement announcing the deal. “We’ve always aspired to share our passion for photography with everyone, and with Google’s support we hope to be able to help many millions more people create awesome pictures.”

Vic Gundotra, Google senior vice president of engineering, revealed the deal as part of a pair of announcements in a Google+ post. In addition to the Nik deal, Gundotra revealed the latest Google+ usage figures.

“It was only a year ago that we opened public sign-up, and we couldn’t have imagined that so many people would join in just 12 months,” Gundotra wrote in the post. “While Google+ is all about creating a better experience across Google, it’s also a destination.”

The figures are good news for Google but it is still has a long way to go catch up with Facebook which has over 900 million users, although more than 83 million profiles are thought to be fake.

This article was originally published on V3.

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