Instagram simply silently added an in-app payment feature as a test that appears for some users, as first discovered by TechCrunch today. The feature allows users to add a credit or debit card and a pin for added security. After the initial configuration, users can make purchases from Instagram. Currently, some users can book appointments in spas and restaurants through a third-party integration with the Resy dinner reservation application.
Instagram confirmed to The Verge that users can reserve services from a limited number of companies on the platform. The payments feature seems to be a continuation of the Instagram plans of March 2017 to give business profiles the option to allow users to book services. It was only released to some users, although in the March announcement, Instagram said that it would launch the feature later in 2017. It seems that it never happened, and the launch is just beginning, although in the testing phase.
Given the number of Instagram influencers who sell different products, from wonderful holders to holographic Macbook cases, there are many companies that could use the feature if Instagram decides to fully extend the payments within the application.