Meta Platforms is considering rolling out ad-free paid versions of Facebook and Instagram for users living in the European Union (EU) in response to regulatory scrutiny, The New York Times reported on Friday.

Those with paid subscriptions won’t see ads, and Meta will continue to offer a free version of the app with ads in the EU, the report said, citing three people familiar with the matter.

The report added that the move could help Meta deal with privacy concerns and other scrutiny from the European Union, as it would give users an alternative to the company’s ad-based service, which relies on analyzing people’s data.

Meta did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

The social media giant has been under the scrutiny of EU antitrust regulators and lost in July a fight against a 2019 German order banning it from collecting user data without consent.

The New York Times reported that it was unclear how much the paid version of the app would cost.

The social media giant, which has been under the scrutiny of EU antitrust regulators, has been fined NOK 1 million (about Rs 7,751,000) per day since Aug. 14 for collecting user data and using it to target users. Ads violate user privacy. . The company is seeking a temporary injunction against the order from Norway’s data protection agency, which will impose daily fines for the next three months. Regulator Datatilsynet said on July 17 that it would be fined if the company did not address privacy breaches the watchdog found.

© Thomson Reuters 2023

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