Start the New Year Fresh!

Cleaning Supplies

This year is going to be big at Flickr! In the coming weeks and months you will see significant updates to Flickr’s user experience, new features and offerings across devices. Our goal is to build a gorgeous, intuitive, and truly beautiful experience for you, your friends and your photos.

To do this, we are starting 2012 with a renewed sense of focus. This means discontinuing certain features that are not core to our product or that haven’t resonated with you. Since the upcoming new experiences will either require, or work significantly better, with modern browsers, we will also discontinue supporting some of the older browsers that only a very small percentage of people are using with Flickr.

In terms of “New Year’s cleaning” here are the things that will go away:


In a few months we will be moving away from Picnik. We know that you love editing your photos on Flickr and this transition doesn’t, in any way, mean that there will no longer be editing capabilities. It’s actually quite the opposite: we are working on making the editing experience even better on the site. We know you care about speed, simplicity and quality and this is exactly what we are working to provide you with.

More on this soon, but we can’t wait to show you what we have in store!

Photo Session

Photo Session is a feature that offered a real-time way to share photos with other people in a browser, with no additional apps to install. The feature had been developed as a technology showcase, but has not seen the user adoption we were hoping for. The feature will be turned-off by March 20, but we will continue to use the technology in other parts of Flickr. For example: Go to on your iPad or iPhone, open the full-screen lightbox view and experience the performance and pinch-to-zoom in the browser – it’s just one place where we are using the technology that was developed for Photo Session.

Flickr Clock

We removed the Flickr Clock from the Navigation late last year. We created the clock to gather visual, video (or “long photos” as we like to call them) moments in time from around the world. It’s a pretty little thing, but its user experience is complicated and it’s not core to our product offering – so we’re going to say goodbye. (Pssst… You can still see it here for a few more days.)

Flickr for Windows 7 Slate PC’s

While we continue to build the best photo sharing app for Windows Phone, we made the decision to discontinue its Slate counterpart. We see great traction with the Windows Phone app and are going to continue to release frequent updates, but the Touch-PC version of the Silverlight App will not be supported after March 20.


The Flickr API fully supports oAuth, which is already used by hundreds of Flickr apps, but there are still some apps that use the old authentication system, called FlickrAuth. We are asking all developers to move over to the new standard bu July 31. There is a related blog post on this topic on our engineering blog

As mentioned above, we will also stop supporting two of the earlier browser versions:

Internet Explorer 7 and Firefox 3.6

For both of the browsers we are seeing a very small percentage of people using them and as of today people with those browsers will see an “update” message to encourage the download of the latest browser versions. This does not mean that IE7 and Firefox 3.6 users will experience problems using the site today, but the features and experiences that we will be releasing this year may not be supported on these browsers. For many reasons, foremost security, we encourage everyone to use the latest browser version on their devices.

We’re excited about what this year has in store for Flickr. With this renewed focus, we can bring more fun and meaningful Flickr features and experiences to you! Expect to see the first start rolling out in the coming weeks, with many more over the course of 2012.

P.S.: If you want to help build new photo sharing experiences, we are hiring engineers!

Photo from the woodstove.

Posted By
Markus Spiering

Product Chief and Americas GM at EyeEm, former Head of Product at Flickr and mobile product guy at Yahoo. Photographer and writer of a few tech books.