The behind-the-scenes look at how Instagram made its Android app run twice as fast


Android is a massive pain for app developers. With the myriad of phone types running it, and therefore hardware tweaks that must be made, it’s a challenge for even the most established companies.

On Wednesday, Instagram opened the curtain on the work it’s been doing for the last year to improve its Android app. The company wanted to improve app startup time, processing power and user interface so they’re top-notch regardless of which type of phone is running it. The amount of work it took to do so was a doozy.

This is the subtle behind-the-scenes process consumers rarely hear about BUT it makes a big difference between a high functioning product and a less mature app. For more design back stories, be sure to check out Gigaom’s design conference — Roadmap — coming up November 18 – 19.

The first thing Instagram did was convert the entire product to a flat design, the type of unembellished visuals…

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