Instagram is not only a great platform to easily share some of your favorite moments with friends and family, it's a useful service for peering outside of your physical location. While you share a picture of your dog in Los Angeles, you can almost instantly view and like a picture someone posted of their breakfast in Tokyo.
On the other hand, many users (and corporations) spend their time on Instagram vying for attention from other users, wanting to become "socially famous," and get whatever they're selling—product, talent, or all too often, nothing—across a wide array of humanity.
But trying to get popular isn't easy unless you're already famous, you're ridiculously good looking, you're extremely talented, you're hilarious, you take great photographs, or you're a Kardashian.
While fame and fortune can't be promised, there is a way to increase your likes substantially, and help yourself become more "popular."
Instaliker Like4Like Instalike (yes, that's actually the name of the app, from here on out referred to as simply "Instalike") from Android dev Kumral, can help you rack up a load of likes for your Instagram pictures. But a violation of Google Play's TOS (terms of service) means that the app is no longer available through standard channels.
It's hard to speculate why, but one likely reason is that the app required that you submit your full Instagram credentials. While many apps connect two accounts together, like Instagram does with Facebook, so that you can post to multiple networks at once, they never require that you enter a password. Rather, they access the connected app's API, which allows one app to access another in a safe manner.
So be warned: Using this app means that you'll be giving up full account information to Instalike, with which they can do who-knows-what, since you're also required to make your profile public. If you think the rewards outweigh the risks, whether for curiosity or marketing purposes, you can do so from this link, then install like normal.
Using a credit-based coin system, you can redeem these "coins" for likes of your photos. Almost instantly, you'll start receiving dozens of likes at a time from legitimate users across Instagram.
As you can see below, I received a little over 200 likes in less than half an hour; which is insane, because I usually average about 50 likes per post.
After a day of having the picture up, I've accumulated almost 400 likes on that post.
So, where are these likes coming from, and are they legit?
Well, the likes come from other Instalike users. You'll eventually run out of coins to redeem for likes, so in order to earn more, you'll need to start liking posts through Instalike. This is the "circle of fake likes" so to speak; you like random people's posts, and random people like yours.
Unfortunately, since the application has your Instagram account and password, it has the potential to do things like post from your account, delete pictures, and like other users' pictures (the latter personally happened to my account).
While I didn't like any pictures through Instalike, roughly a hundred or so "phantom likes" showed up in my Posts You've Liked section. All of the pictures you see below are pictures that I did not personally like, but are instead pictures of other Instalike users.
While I certainly can't get on board with this service, kids and teenagers may not care about the potential repercussions of a third-party organization having their Instagram login credentials in their possession. The same might go for a small company that's looking to build a following, as this could potentially be a way to earn some social media cred.
But for users like me, who cherish their privacy and security, this app, along with its many clones (IstLike, Get Likes, BoostLikes, InstaLiker, BeHot, etc.) is one that was promptly deleted (with a very necessary password change and a fallback to Private mode).