Flud News Roundup, April 9

What is news, you might wonder. Well, you’ve come to the right place. The Flud team has not only built an app that helps you find the most important and interesting news of the day, but we’re also going to give you our top favorites. Here’s a few things that happened today:

Facebook Buys Instagram: I don’t think a single person saw this coming – and if they did, it was a lucky guess. $1 billion sounds like a lot but for a buyer like Facebook, it’s a small price to control one service that was killing them with user engagement and mobile experience. AllThingsD points out that Instagram got geotagging right where Facebook has failed. The backlash to the buy was summed up well by PandoDaily – your early users, who were with you when you were small, see success as “selling out.”

Is Facebook essentially about photos, as Gigaom says? And sure, Instagram would lose that indie feel if you can start to contribute to it via third party services, but could in turn become a hub like Flickr instead of a quirky destination. And in Instagram’s place, another app will rise up to be hipster-exclusive for a season.

Microsoft buys $1 billion of AOL patents: With this announcement also happening today – you can’t *not* compare Microsoft’s move to Facebook’s. Patent ownership exchange reeks of old media while purchasing a platform for its user engagement is wholly new media. TechCrunch points out that Microsoft is a shareholder in Facebook so this prevents AOL from suing Facebook over patent issues. Or, as ReadWriteWeb puts it, “Not surprisingly, many of the patents being acquired will help position Microsoft in patent attacks on Google. But they’re not likely to do much to help the tech industry or spur innovation.”

IKEA is building 1200 rental homes in London: Cue the jokes about having to assemble the house yourself and then selling it on Craigslist nine months later. But seriously, did you read this article already? It’s not just cheap houses. It’s a utopian-style neighborhood where no cars are allowed. It’s a whole new level of gated community. Cue the jokes about a real-life Truman Show.

Inside Manpacks: Our Fluders, a savvy group of stylish news junkies, never misses an oncoming trend. So it’s not surprising one of our most Fluded stories today was a behind-the-scenes interview with a founder of Manpacks, via The Next Web. Manpacks are another spin on the Dollar Shave Club (but without the hilarious video). As some would say, it’s Birchbox for men. It’s men’s essentials, delivered monthly, for men who cannot be held responsible for taking care of their own hygiene. Are you a member?

*Photo via