"Flickr has been neglected for a long time until recently," he said. By bringing on more talent to improve the app, possibly from the ground up, Yahoo could be trying to make Flickr a stronger social property for the company, Sterling said, in the way that Instagram is to Facebook.
"Yahoo could be looking at Instagram as a model of where they want to take Flickr," he said.
Flickr has more than 75 million users, according to Yahoo.
Sign up for MIS Asia eNewsletters.