Meta Announces Paid Ad-Free Subscription for Facebook, Instagram in Europe

Meta Platforms has introduced ad-free subscription plans for Instagram and Facebook in Europe. The paid subscription lets European users access Facebook and Instagram without ads starting next month. The new move allows the social media company to comply with the European Union regulations. Facebook and Instagram users will still be able to access the platforms for free but with ads in their feeds. The paid ad-free subscription is limited to individuals aged 18 and above.

Meta announced a paid ad-free subscription for Facebook and Instagram via a blog post on Monday. Starting next month, Facebook and Instagram users in the European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA), and Switzerland can pay a monthly fee to use Meta-owned platforms without ads. The service costs EUR 9.99 (roughly Rs. 880) per month on the Web and EUR 12.99 (roughly Rs. 1,100) per month on iOS and Android. These prices account for fees charged by Apple and Google, in line with their respective policies.

The ad-free subscription plan will be limited to users aged 18 years and older in the EU, EEA, and Switzerland. It will apply across all linked Facebook and Instagram accounts until March 1, 2024. However, starting from March 1, users are required to pay an additional charge of EUR 6 per month on the Web and EUR 8 per month on iOS and Android for each additional account listed in a user’s Account Center.

Meta’s new paid subscription is being made available to comply with evolving European regulations including the Digital Markets Act and GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). “We respect the spirit and purpose of these evolving European regulations, and are committed to complying with them” Meta said. The company assured that it will continue to provide free access to its products for users who do not wish to pay. Also, advertisers will be able to continue running personalised advertising campaigns in Europe to reach those who choose to continue to receive a free, ad-supported online service, said Meta.

The new Meta plan would make an Instagram or Facebook subscription a bit more economical than X’s Premium+ subscription, previously known as Twitter Blue. It costs $16 (roughly Rs. 1,300) per month and it removes ads from X alongside providing a blue checkmark. The basic tier of X is priced at $3 (roughly Rs. 300) per month but is not ad-free.

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