It’s only a matter of time before Instagram has a button that lets you post Instagram images to Google + in addition to Twitter, Flickr, Posterous and Facebook. Or before Google makes it easier somehow. In fact, for all I know there’s already a turnkey solution that I haven’t seen.
In the meantime I came upon these directions yesterday. They worked for me, but could use a little clarity. So if you’re among the active Instagram users base who would like your photos to appear in your Google + albums, here’s a more thorough explanation on how to to automatically link your Instagram images to your new Google + account. Note that the images will not appear as a status update or “share” in your stream, but they will end up in your photos, accessible to anyone you want, depending on your permission settings. Here you go.
- Make sure you have downloaded and installed Picasa. That is not simply picasaweb.google.com, but the downloadable app, version 3.8 for Mac, in my case, which has features that make it easier for you to upload images to your Picasa account.
- Download and install Dropbox. Dropbox is a free service that lets you store, access and share photos, docs and videos from any computer.
- Authorize Instagram to automatically post photos to your dropbox via Instadrop, a simple little app that makes this possible. Then take a photo and post to Instagram. A new folder should appear in your Dropbox. Note that only new photos, post installation, will appear.
- Next, go to your Picasa 3 app, not your Google account. Under “file” click on “add folder to Picasa.” (There is no “add folder” when you are accessing Picasa via Google.) The folder manager window will appear. You have to find your actual dropbox folder and click on scan always. If you can’t find your dropbox folder, try this: harddrive/users/yourname/dropbox. That’s the location of the folder. Don’t move the folder. Instead, in your folder manager, click on hard drive, then users, then your name, then dropbox. There should be an Instagram folder there, presuming you have posted to Instagram since linking Instadrop and Dropbox.
- Next check your Picasa 3 app. You will see the same Instagram folder – mine showed up under “other stuff.” Over on the top right of the window there is a button option Sync to Web: On (or off). Turn it on. This should link your dropbox images, which are automatically updated by Instagram, to Picasa.
- Lastly, go to your google.com account, click on photos (your Picasa photos) and the album will be there. You can set your privacy settings either there, under “actions” then “album properties,” or on Picasa 3 under “share.”
You are all set. Next time you post to Instagram it will appear in your dropbox, then in your Google photos and simultaneously in your Google Plus album
Should take you only a few minutes to set up if you already use Picasa. If you don’t you should. Chances are that if Google + takes off, this cloud-based photo storing/sharing service will become an even more essential part of your social footprint than it already is.