As Twitter continues to face criticism for its platform, Meta Platforms is preparing to launch its highly anticipated microblogging app, Threads. Designed to rival Twitter, Threads was expected to launch this coming Thursday and will be hosted solely on the Instagram platform.
Meta’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg has accepted a challenge from Elon Musk, the current owner of Twitter, to take part in a cage match at a Las Vegas arena. The winner will decide the fate of the two rival apps.
Threads shares many similarities with Twitter. It allows users to share their point of view through text or image-based threads. It also allows users to keep the same username and retain their followers from the photo-sharing platform Instagram. On top of that, Threads’ features are closely integrated with Instagram, and users can log in through their Instagram handle and follow the same accounts.
Read more: Meta Is Looking At Launching A Twitter Rival
“Threads is going to pose a huge threat to Twitter because it’s coming from the Meta and Instagram family of apps,” said Drew Benvie, CEO of social media consultancy Battenhall. “Instagram has 2 billion users compared to around 250 million of Twitter, so it’s already ten times bigger. If only one-in-ten Instagram users tries using Threads, it will overtake Twitter in the blink of an eye.”
Elon Musk replied lightheartedly to Zuckerberg’s challenge with a post on Twitter, saying “Thank goodness they’re so sanely run.”
As part of its launch, Meta is taking action to firmly establish Threads as a credible alternative to Twitter. As part of a large-scale downsizing effort, the company is eliminating 21,000 positions. Meta is also asking users to grant Instagram access to personal data in order to use its new platform.
“As I once said here, it’s hard to say whether Meta will succeed in developing a Twitter competitor,” wrote 9to5Mac. “However, the company has plenty of experience in creating (and copying) social networks. Instagram currently has over 1 billion users, while Twitter has around 400 million. If half of Instagram’s users decide to use Threads, that’s already more than the number of users Twitter has. We’ve seen multiple interesting alternatives to Twitter, like Mastodon and Bluesky – but none of them have found mass appeal. And that’s something Meta knows how to get, whether you like the company or not.”
As the launch of Threads quickly approaches, it is clear that the company has a formidable weapon in its arsenal that could potentially threaten the reign of Twitter. It is yet to be seen what the future holds for these two platforms, but one thing is certain – an intense battle is about to take place.