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Instagram tests Take a Break feature to stop you from scrolling so much

The feature sends out notifications to remind you to breathe or listen to music.

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The Take a Break feature will appear in your timeline, asking if you want to opt in.
Sarah Tew/CNET

Instagram will begin testing a new feature this week called Take a Break, CEO Adam Mosseri said Wednesday. The opt-in setting will encourage people to take a break from the Meta-owned photo-sharing app.  

As you scroll, the new feature can remind you to take a break after a specific time interval: 10, 20 or 30 minutes. The notification that appears will suggest several ways for you to ease off: take a few deep breaths, write down what you're thinking, listen to your favorite song or take care of something on your to-do list.

Expect to see the new feature in the coming days if you're included in the testing phase. If not, Take a Break is expected to be more widely available in December, Mosseri said.

The new feature comes in the wake of the latest controversy for Facebook, now Meta. Earlier this year, former Facebook product manager Frances Haugen leaked thousands of documents from the social media giant, resulting in hearings before Congress and reports on Instagram's harmful effects on young people, especially teens

In September, the company also hit pause on Instagram Kids, a dedicated service it's building for children, in order to spend time focusing on developing parental supervision tools.