Facebook’s services faced multiple outages over the past week, impacting millions of users. Instagram is now testing a new feature that notifies users whenever there’s an outage or technical issues.
As per the company, users will find a notification in their Activity Feed whenever Instagram’s services are down. Moreover, users also receive a notification when services are back to normal.
The company detailed the new feature in a blog post (via), adding that it is currently testing the feature in the U.S. The testing will apparently continue in the region for the next few months. While the company currently has no plans on bringing this feature to other markets, that could change in the future.
Instagram is also bringing a new tool called Account Status
“We won’t send a notification every single time there is an outage, but when we see that people are confused and looking for answers, we’ll determine if something like this could help make things clearer,” the Facebook subsidiary said in its post.
Instagram offered a few screenshots detailing the new feature. Notifications can detail which specific aspect of Instagram is down. Clicking this notification pulls up further information on the issue. However, Instagram didn’t mention how it will send notifications during a prolonged outage like the one from last week.
In addition to downtime alerts, the company is also introducing a tool known as Account Status. This is an upgraded version of Support Requests that made its way to the platform last year. “Account Status will be your one-stop shop to see what’s happening with your account and content distribution,” Instagram said.
In this section, users will know whether their accounts could be disabled in the future or if any of their recent posts were removed. Users will also have the option to review Instagram’s decision to remove the post with a “Request a Review” button. The company will reportedly bring more information to this tool in the future, including information on recommendations and distributions within the platform.
Amidst revelations by Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen, the company is adopting a more cautious approach. A recent report talked about Facebook potentially halting product development to undergo reputational reviews. Meanwhile, Instagram could see the introduction of a feature known as “take a break,” reminding users to step aside from the platform to avoid prolonged exposure.