Facebook-owned Instagram has broken apps and surprised developers by substantially reducing the number of API calls allowed per user per hour.
According to reports, the rate limit for the Instagram API was reduced from 5,000 per user per hour to 200 per user per hour this weekend without warning. TechCruch says that its sources at the company have confirmed the reduction, and points to StackOverflow, where developers have turned to discuss the effects of the change.
TechCrunch indicates that Instagram is refusing to comment on the reduction and notes that the page detailing rate limits on the Instagram API documentation website has gone missing, leaving developers in the dark.
The most likely explanation for Instagram's action is the ongoing crisis that its parent company is facing over Cambridge Analytica's abuse of the Facebook API to obtain data from tens of millions of users. While Instagram has not been implicated in the scandal, the move to tighten control over the Instagram API could be an effort to get in front of risks that it too could be abused by rogue third parties.