Instagram is one of the best habit-forming technologies in the Digital world. The photo and video sharing social network, purchased by Facebook for $1 billion in 2012, has captured the minds and attention of more the 150 million users (90% under the age of 35).
I believe one of the main drivers of Facebook acquisition to Instagram is the deep understanding of its team to psychology as much as technology-that unleashed a strong habit-forming product on users who subsequently made it a part of their daily routines.
The majority do not realize that they are glued to Instagram, they snap and post dozens of pictures daily or weekly using Instagram. For them it's just fun, but in the backend a lot of effort was made by the Instagram team to form this daily habit and embed it within a user's mind. A chain reaction that form this kind of habit always start with a simple trigger.
Inner Self Triggers
Instagram coupled tightly with users thoughts and emotions, and created an intangible inner triggers. For the majority Instagram developed a predictable response cued by an inner trigger. Through repetition, a connection was formed between the users to capture images of things around them (selfies, nature, people ..etc) and the mobile application they have on their mobile devices.
Whenever the users sees something cool worth a snapshot, they turn to Instagram. By thoughtfully moving users from external trigger (Something cool you saw) and Inner trigger (the urge to snapshot), Instagram designed a constant/persistent routine in people's lives.
A need is triggered every time a moment is worth holding on to, and the immediate solution for any user is Instagram. In your mind its a routine that happens on its own :-)