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Meta is testing a new ad in the Instagram feed that you can't scroll past

The company is experimenting with "ad breaks" you can't skip.

SOPA Images via Getty Images

Instagram ads may soon be much harder to ignore. As TechCrunch reports, Meta is testing a new type of non-skippable ad in the Instagram feed, which the company is calling an “ad break.”

With the new ads, which have already been spotted by some users, you can’t scroll past the feed ad until the”ad break” finishes. According to screenshots shared on Reddit and X, it appears that the “breaks” are a few seconds long, though it’s not clear if the length could change should Meta decide to make the new format official. “Ad breaks are a new way of seeing ads on Instagram,” an in-app message states. “Sometimes you may need to view an ad before you can keep browsing.”

While non-skippable video ads are common on other platforms, like YouTube, it’s a new and much more aggressive format for Instagram. It’s also notable that the company is experimenting with the ads in its main feed rather than in Reels or Stories, where video ads are more common (but for now still skippable).

Meta didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment, but the company confirmed to TechCrunch that it was testing the new ad format. “As we test and learn, we will provide updates should this test result in any formal product changes,” a Meta spokesperson said.