Instagram Stealthily Amplifies Users’ Daily Time Limit

In the latest maneuver to exhibit the public and politicians its effort to minimize its damaging effect on users, Instagram has once more upped its minimum daily screen time limit to 30 minutes, from the previous 10 to 15 minutes.

According to TechCrunch, one user revealed that the social networking application is demanding a reconfiguration of its setting to “set a new value” for their day-to-day screen time limit.

“The available values for daily time limits are changing as part of an app update,” Instagram’s pop-up read.

At the moment, the social forum provides users with a time limit of 30 minutes.

As you may know, Instagram falls under the umbrella of Meta’s – formerly Facebook – social networking platform. While the social platform witnessed an alteration in its screen time configurations, Facebook, on the other hand, remains coarser when it comes to this aspect.

Users are tooled with the option of limiting their increments of five minutes, where they can choose their time limit on Facebook. While a pop-up notification appears to inform users of the excessive usage of the application, the company, however, also provided them with the option of ignoring the notification.

During the same period when the feature was initially enrolled, Meta elaborated on its idea and approach, claiming it gave users more control of the time spent on their platforms. Adding it created a healthier ecosystem for parents and teens to foster conversation about healthy online habits.

In November, Instagram initiated the testing of its “Take a Break” feature to nudge users, with a particular focus on teens, to put down their devices every once and while.

While it remains pretty vague how Instagram has upped the minimum daily time limitations, the timing appears to be synchronized with Facebook’s daily active users’ plunge in its last quarter. It is worth noting that most of Meta’s social networking platforms, Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram, maintained leveled growth of daily active users.

As for 2022, Meta had previously revealed that it is expecting a decreased revenue growth, driven by intense rivalry for the users’ times and attention due to features that generate lower revenue margin, such as reels.

Amplifying the time limit and fixating users to their devices with excessive scrolling on Instagram – and by default generating more ads views – could be Meta’s tactic to address the drop in revenues.