Shawn Blanc:

Sara Lacy of PandoDaily asks him how Instagram plans to make money. Based on his answer it sounds like: (a) their current user-base of 30 million-ish people is not yet big enough to start monetizing the service; and (b) their plan is to build a tool that advertisers can use so they don’t have to go through the “terrible experience” of using their iPhone to post an image to Instagram.

That’s sad, mainly because I love the service and “we’ll figure out revenue later” mindsets usually lead to acquisitions and shut downs of the service. Instagram is my new Gowalla, and I’d hate to see them go the same way.

I have no doubt large portion of the user base would pay a few bucks for a new filter pack or other features, much like Paper brilliantly has done. Free, but $7.99 to unlock all the features.