Facebook is trying to really hard to tell people it owns Instagram and WhatsApp. Earlier this month, the company introduced new branding for all of its apps. On Wednesday, it introduced Facebook Pay, a service that’ll work across all apps. Now, it’s testing an Instagram feed-like feature in its main app.
A report by TechCrunch suggests the social network tested a feature called ‘Popular Photos’ in its app last month. Currently, if you tap on a photo from the news feed, and swipe down you’re redirected back to your feed. However, with this new feature, you can tap on “See more photos” and keep scrolling down.
Popular Photos also truncates the caption after 65 characters – as compared to 125 characters in the Instagram feed.
Facebook confirmed to TechCrunch it was running a small test and it has now concluded. The company will make changes to the feature and run updated tests in the future.
At the moment it’s not clear what features it’ll include in future versions or when it’ll roll out. We’ve asked Facebook for more details, and we’ll update the story if we hear back.
The social network already offers endless scrolling of related videos through the news feed. For instance, if you tap on a sports-related video, Facebook will show you more sports-related videos as you scroll down.
A report by eMarketer published in May suggests time spent on the Facebook app by the US-based users has declined over time. So while the Popular Photo feature resembles Instagram’s feed, Facebook might be just trying to increase visual elements on its app in order to lure people to spend more time on it.
The font, called Noto, was launched in 2016 by Google and Monotype, which spent five years creating a family of typefaces that include upwards of 300,000 glyphs representing more than 800 languages. The Latin characters in the typeface family are simple and sans-serif, and they look slightly slimmer and cleaner than Ikea’s previous type, Verdana.
But that’s not the main reason that this change makes a lot of sense for Ikea. As the company continues to operate 422 stores globally and open even more, it needs a typeface that will work in all of these contexts while unifying Ikea’s brand.
Noto is considered the most universal typeface in existence. That’s because computers don’t necessarily recognize all glyphs, particularly in less common languages that have their own scripts. If your computer doesn’t recognize a letter, it will render the glyph as a box, which is called a Tofu in the typeface biz. Noto is short for “No Tofu,” providing visual representations of every letter of all of the 800 languages. It’s part of Google’s goal to make a font available for every language that is considered a script by Unicode, the consortium that creates standards for computers.
Given that in the last year Ikea opened its first store in India, where there are 22 national recognized regional languages, to go along with stores across Asia where conventional Western typefaces don’t work as well, it makes sense that the company wants to use a font that will support a broader range of languages.
“Our ambition is to make Ikea one of the most loved and trusted brands in the world,” said an Ikea spokesperson in a statement. “We are renewing the Ikea visual identity to make Ikea even more recognizable. Today, people experience Ikea in many different places, both physical and digital. We needed to complement and update our visual identity to enable many more people to meet Ikea in a consistent and inspiring way.” The company updated its logo recently, making it more legible and mobile-friendly, and the new typeface, the spokesperson added, “stands out, builds a strong visual identity over time through consistent and coherent use, and feels modern.”