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INNOVATIONThreads: The New Meta Application that Challenges Twitter

Threads: The New Meta Application that Challenges Twitter

Meta has launched its new application called Threads, positioned as a companion to Instagram, to compete directly with Twitter. With the backing of Meta’s resources and Instagram’s massive user base of over 2 billion monthly active users worldwide, Threads is being hailed as a potential “Twitter killer.” This intensifies the rivalry between Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk, who acquired Twitter last year and made controversial changes to the user experience.

Threads allows users to engage in real-time public conversations and enhance their Instagram experience. To sign up, users need an Instagram account, and their Threads username must match their Instagram username. They can import their Instagram follower list directly into Threads and verified users on Instagram will also be verified on Threads. Privacy settings can be adjusted to make the account public or private.

Functionally, Threads bears a strong resemblance to Twitter, allowing users to post text-based messages, photos, and videos on a scrollable feed for interaction with followers. However, direct messaging is not yet supported, unlike Twitter. Instagram has expressed openness to adding features based on user feedback.

Creating Threads as a separate application from Instagram was a strategic decision to maintain simplicity in the main app. Instagram has focused on streamlining its platform, and Threads presents an opportunity for expansion in public conversations. Meta explored ideas proposed by engineers and designers, taking the risk to develop Threads as a rival application.

Meta aims for Threads to work with other applications within the Fediverse, a federation of services sharing communication protocols. This integration allows creators and influencers to migrate their follower base across platforms, reducing dependence on a single platform.

Meta has a history of imitating rival features, as seen with Reels in 2020 as a TikTok-like tool. Threads now serves as an alternative to Twitter. However, the crucial distinction lies in the popularity and status of the rival platforms. While TikTok was already popular and accepted at the time of Reels’ launch, Twitter is currently facing significant challenges, further exacerbated by the release of Threads.

Threads is available for free on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store in the United States and around 100 other countries. However, it won’t be initially available in the European Union (EU) due to the Digital Markets Act, which restricts data sharing among major tech companies across services.

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