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Facebook’s $1 billion acquisition of Instagram underscores the continued rise of photos as an entry point for social networking. Today Facebook took that approach a step further with the release of Facebook Camera, an iPhone app that creates an alternative, photo-centric interface for Facebook.

The free app lets people take and edit pictures, apply filters, and share photos quickly on Facebook, individually or in batches. It also lets users view a stream of photo-based updates from their Facebook friends.

With the release, Facebook joins a crowded field of camera apps, but the company has the potential to make an outsized impact based on its user base of more than 900 million people.

Facebook isn’t commenting on the possibility of versions for Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry.

More details in this Facebook blog post.

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