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Instagram is testing ‘unskippable’ ads that you can’t scroll past

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Instagram is testing “ad breaks” that force you to stop and look at an ad for a period of time before you can continue scrolling. Several X and Reddit users reported seeing the feature, and Instagram spokesperson Matthew Tye confirmed to The Verge that ad breaks are being tested. Tye said Instagram would “provide updates should this test result in any formal product changes.”

One Redditor spotted the feature when scrolling through stories and posts. After a certain amount of scrolling, Instagram prevented them from going further until they looked at an ad. As shown in the screenshot, Instagram displays an “ad break” icon with a countdown timer that shows how long until you can start scrolling again.

When the user tapped the icon for…

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