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Instagram update brings food orders so you can buy dinner straight from stories

Andrew Griffin
Thursday 23 April 2020 14:30 BST
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(Getty Images)

Instagram will let people order food through the app with a range of new features.

It will allow people to buy takeaways and delivery straight from stories – meaning that if someone sees something they want to eat within the app, they can simply click to have it brought to their doorstep.

The company says it made the change to support local businesses through the lockdown, and allow restaurants to promote themselves as sales fall.

The Facebook-owned photo and video-sharing app said a new Action button could be added to a business or restaurant's profile, or a Food Order sticker could be added to their Instagram Stories.

People who tap on either prompt will be able to make a purchase through the business's website.

Instagram said the initiative was designed to help businesses struggling with the challenges of the Covid-19 crisis by allowing people to support local food outlets.

The scheme was launched in the US and Canada last week and has been expanded to the UK as part of a worldwide rollout.

At the time, the social media platform said: "For many businesses right now, every sale helps. We'll continue to work on features that make it easier to support the small businesses you care about."

Instagram's update comes after another Facebook-owned platform, WhatsApp, released a new set of stickers designed to help people communicate about aspects of the pandemic.

The stickers, developed in partnership with the World Health Organisation, were created to help users more accurately communicate the thoughts and feelings of being in lockdown.

Tech giants such as Facebook have come under scrutiny during the pandemic, predominately for their response to the spread of disinformation linked to the virus.

Appearing before MPs on the House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee on Wednesday, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said he had spoken to tech firms about doing more to stop the spread of disinformation.

Mr Dowden praised the companies for "how they have stepped up to the plate", but said he had spoken to them about how they could "beef up" their systems, as well as addressing the speed of action and working out of hours.

Additional reporting by agencies

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