The Great Instagram Watch of 2013 for Windows Phone (or GIW2013WP for short) continues today, as a new piece of evidence has emerged. A shady new Twitter account under the moniker @anontechleaks has provided a screenshot of what they claim to be Instagram listed and waiting in the Windows Phone Store. At first I wrote it off, much like anyone else would. But upon some investigation into the image, I have to admit that there's a slight chance this is the real deal. More details after the jump.
First some background on the story. @anontechleaks first made noise when they tweeted out a photo of the Instagram listing and published it to their account. However, the photo had one major mistake in the first line which implied the listing was fake: "It's a free, fun, and simple way to make and share gorgeous photos on your Android." The obvious reaction was to scream "fake!" at the top of our lungs.
In response to the accusations, @anontechleaks claimed that the "photo is couple days old" and proceeded to upload an updated screenshot which is featured at the top of this post. This time, the listing has been corrected with nary a mention of Android in sight. At this point I found myself conflicted, so I decided to figure out if this screenshot was legit or not.
Anyone who is familiar with image editing knows that you can fight Photoshop with Photoshop, exposing any artificial editing in an image. I've actually done this before for the site, testing what turned out to be a fake Nokia render as well as a fake Windows Phone 8 leak. The way it works is that by tinkering with the RGB levels of an image, you can determine if an image has been doctored based on the presence of artifacts (aka weird splotches that your eye didn't notice before).
A photoshopped image tested (L)
Instagram screenshot tested (R)
On the left, I have tested an image I photohsopped for our recent edition of Smackdown; the top is what I uploaded and the bottom is the same image tested by changing the levels. As you can see, the image is clearly a fake with artifacts all over the place. On the right, I have applied the same test to the @anontechleak screenshot and surprisingly, there is absolutely no artifacting in the bottom image. The conclusion? The Instagram screenshot has not been photoshopped.
However, just because an image has not been photoshopped says nothing about whether or not it's fake. Take a look at the image below. That's an Instagram listing in the Windows Phone Store that I've created myself, and if you were to test it in Photoshop there would be zero artifacts.
How is that possible? Without going into too much detail I just used Google Chrome's built in HTML/CSS editor to edit any app listing that I found. I changed the icon to a transparent Instagram logo, copied the description from the Android listing, edited it to reference Windows Phone instead, and voila. I chose not to change the app name, price, and ratings in order to make it clear that this is an intentional fake. Ignoring those, it looks pretty convincing right?
After all of this image and web editing, I think it's safe to say that you should not trust the leak. There's a chance it's real, and I'll be as happy as the next Windows Phone user to finally have it available in the Store. But assuming the @anontechleak screenshot is a fake, it was one specifically made to avoid the scrutiny of Photoshop and as a fellow 'shopper I tip my hat to them for the close attention to detail.
Via: WPCentral | Source: @anontechleaks 1, 2