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Meta Platforms is testing a new subscription package that will, among other things, allow users to get a verified blue badge just a few months after its recently-acquired rival Twitter made a similar move to democratize access to this long-sought status.

Mark Zuckerberg, the head of the social media company, was the first to announce the new subscription package called Meta Verified. The program will only be available in Australia and New Zealand initially but the company expects to make it accessible in other regions soon.

According to a blog post from Meta that shared further details about the new program, the cost of the subscription will be $11.99 per month for those who use the web version of both Instagram and Facebook and $14.99 for iOS and Android users.

This is What a Meta Verified Account Will Get

Meta Verified accounts will be allowed to get a verified blue badge by providing a government-issued ID. In addition, subscribers will enjoy access to personalized customer support and will see their account’s reach increase.

The government ID must match both the photo and profile name. For now, users will not be able to change any of these two elements or their date of birth without having to go through the verification process again. In addition, Meta will offer a dedicated account monitoring service to make sure the subscriber is not impersonated within the platform.

Any accounts that had already been verified by Meta’s former vetting process will maintain their status for now. However, the company warned that a subscription may be mandatory in the future to keep the badge.

The price of Meta Verified is higher than that offered by Twitter for its Blue subscribers, which stands at $11.99 for mobile users and $8.99 for web users. However, Meta is offering verified badges for two platforms instead of one.

Twitter introduced the overhauled version of Blue shortly after Elon Musk acquired the company in an effort to further monetize the platform at a point when advertisers were jumping ship.

Blue has been relatively successful and one of the key influencing factors that entice users to subscribe is the possibility of getting the long-sought verified blue badge that was previously reserved for “notable” characters within the micro-blogging platform.

Mobile Developer Alessandro Paluzzi Keeps Tabs on Everything Meta is Working On

Rumors that a subscription package was being rolled out circulated since 2 February when mobile developer Alessandro Paluzzi tweeted that Instagram was working on such a feature. Paluzzi is known for keeping track of the changes made to the source code of top social media platforms to inform the public about upcoming updates that are currently in the works.

 

Yesterday, Paluzzi provided a sneak peek into the verification process. It appears that Meta will force users to set up two-factor authentication (2FA) for their accounts before allowing them to apply for the blue badge.

Last week, Instagram rolled out a new feature called Channels that allow creators to broadcast messages to their fan base to keep them updated about their latest content, events they will be participating in, and other similar information.

Channels will only be available to US users initially but creators overseas can already apply to be among the first to test the feature once it is rolled out in other regions.

This new subscription program comes to join the several new upgrades that Meta has been performing to Instagram to keep it in the lead as TikTok has been aggressively growing its user base.

The most relevant of these overhauls has been the launch of Instagram Reels, which are short video formats that users can share by leveraging a powerful video editing tool that allows them to add music, modify the speed of the videos, and incorporate filters.

Over 2 billion people use Instagram every month and the company is making sure that the platform remains at the lead by keeping track of what competitors are doing.

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