Yes, that’s right—you’re reading another piece looking at Instagram alternatives for photographers. Throughout 2021 and 2022, the platform has significantly shifted toward video with Reels. While many users have used this to their advantage, those that just wanted to take pictures have not been happy with the lower engagement on their stills.
While you don’t have to delete Instagram, you might want to explore other places to connect with fellow photo-takers. YouPic and VERO are two popular options, and both offer a wide selection of benefits for photographers.
But which is the better choice? We look closely at both platforms in this article.
1. Mobile App Compatibility
One of the main reasons that Instagram was so popular with photographers is that you could upload pictures straight from your smartphone. On top of that, keeping track of what your followers were posting was easy when out and about.
With the above in mind, you’ll want to consider mobile compatibility when choosing between YouPic and VERO. You can download a dedicated app on your smartphone regardless of your preferred platform.
VERO and YouPic are both available on iOS and Android. You can download both apps free of charge, making it easier to determine which one is better for you.
One thing worth noting is that VERO has yet to have a fully operational desktop platform as of November 2022. However, the computer version is currently in beta mode.
2. Premium Plans
At the time of writing, Instagram does not have a paid subscription plan. However, many platforms catered to photographers do; Flickr and 500px are two such examples. How do VERO and YouPic compare in this regard?
VERO also does not have a paid subscription plan, but the app has mentioned that it will make new users pay for access in the future (this won’t affect you if you’ve already signed up). No specified date has been announced, though—as per this BBC News report—it had originally intended to do so in 2019.
YouPic has a free version, but you can also upgrade to a premium membership. You will find two pricing plans: YouPic Premium and YouPic Pro.
YouPic Premium costs $9.99 per month when billed annually and $19.99 per month if you’d rather pay monthly. Meanwhile, YouPic Pro costs $29.99 per month (billed yearly) or $49.99 per month (billed monthly).
YouPic Premium lets you publish unlimited stories, and unlike the free version, you can upload as many high-quality photos as you want. Meanwhile, YouPic Pro offers handy features like being able to create your own photography website. With your website, you can also get a custom domain.
When using YouPic, you can also buy art directly from its shop.
3. Multimedia Content
It’s easy for photographers to complain about Reels, but they do allow new opportunities. For example, you can improve your videography skills and allow these traits to complement your photography. And if you get really good, you can sell these services to clients.
Are you looking to upload different kinds of content alongside your still photos? If so, your options will differ depending on whether you choose YouPic or VERO.
On VERO, you can share links to external websites—such as articles you’ve written. You can also post videos and music to your profile. And you’ve got plenty of other options, such as sharing books, apps, and games.
YouPic provides fewer options in this respect; the platform is geared toward still photos.
Many people have become fed up with Instagram because they feel like the community aspect has now gone. Several users have expressed their desire to “make Instagram Instagram again”, with many complaining that they rarely see posts from people they follow anymore.
If you’re moving away from Instagram because you want to engage with a community of photographers, VERO and YouPic have options in this respect. VERO allows you to like and comment on other people’s posts, though it doesn’t provide a choice to like comments—which was one of Instagram’s best tools.
You can also save posts on VERO. The app also lets you follow users, in addition to adding people as connections—based on whether they’re an acquaintance or closer to you. Moreover, you can send private messages to users.
YouPic has a selection of cool community aspects. One of the most interesting is the ability to rate pictures based on creativity, technique, composition, and content. You can also reshare people’s posts with your followers; this tool works similarly to the retweet function on Twitter.
On YouPic, you can also favorite people’s photos and comment on their posts. Moreover, you can follow creators you like. If you upgrade to YouPic Pro, you can see who viewed your profile; this works similarly to when you see who viewed your LinkedIn page.
5. User Experience
Regardless of your opinions on the direction that Instagram has chosen to take, it’s hard to deny that its user experience is one of the best out of the major social media platforms. In fact, you could probably go as far as saying that the app works better than any of its competitors.
YouPic and VERO have user-friendly interfaces, and their apps work without too many issues. VERO has a chronological feed, which you will find a breath of fresh air if you remember what Instagram was like in its early days. You can also segment your feed based on photos and other forms of media on VERO.
These are some of the few reasons why photographers are switching from Instagram to VERO.
YouPic also has a feed that you can scroll through to see pictures of people you follow. However, you will also see suggested posts from other photographers—allowing you to discover new artists that you might find interesting. Read more about how YouPic works here.
Instagram has around 500 million daily active users, and neither VERO nor YouPic is at that level. But at the same time, the two platforms have sizable communities that you can become a part of.
YouPic has over three million users on its platform. While recent statistics of VERO’s user total aren’t currently available, the BBC News article we mentioned earlier said that the service had around five million users in 2019.
YouPic and VERO Are Great for Photographers Looking to Build a Community
Neither VERO nor YouPic currently has the level of popularity that Instagram does, but you will enjoy a couple of benefits. On both platforms, you’ll find a niche community of people that love doing the same thing as you: taking photos and bringing your ideas to life.
More importantly, both VERO and YouPic are well-designed for photographers to interact with others. You can upload high-quality images to your feed, discover new artists, and follow interesting photographers.