After a public spat over Meta’s next project, tech heavyweights Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are gearing up for an epic cage match. Both Musk and Zuckerberg are fully committed to the fight, according to UFC president Dana White. A new text-based discussion software called Threads is about to be released by Meta, Facebook’s parent company, with the intention of challenging Twitter. The app will launch in Australia after being made available in the US and UK. Like other Meta platforms, Threads will track user information such as location, purchases and browsing patterns. In particular, it will differ from recent developments on Twitter by offering unlimited viewing of posts as a free service.
Threads is positioned in the App Store description as a forum for community debate on a range of topics. To promote Twitter Blue, Twitter owner Elon Musk revealed that the popular TweetDeck user dashboard will soon become a paid service. Concerned about data scraping, Musk has also limited the number of tweets users can view. Musk and Zuckerberg have agreed to a cage match as their animosity heats up. Musk’s mocking comment about Threads raises the possibility of a growing rivalry between the tech giants. Reels and Stories have drawn comparisons to TikTok and Snapchat respectively, prompting claims that Meta is stealing ideas from other sites. However, Mastodon and other smaller platforms pale in comparison to Meta’s scale.
It’s a testing time for Meta as it launches Threads. The Instagram post introducing the Twitter rival promoted it as a network for text-based conversations. Whether Zuckerberg or Musk will prevail in this ongoing conflict is a question that remains to be answered. Early indications are that Threads will have a structure similar to Twitter, including elements of Instagram’s comments section, and allow users to interact through replies and hashtags.
Many accuse Meta of stealing ideas, while experts say the company has successfully adapted features and business strategies. Since Musk’s acquisition, Twitter has lost several major sponsors and the introduction of a daily post limit has drawn criticism. With the introduction of Instagram Threads, the rivalry between Musk and Zuckerberg has taken on a new form, but the stakes are still high and could result in a knockout.
More than 5 million people had signed up to the network four hours after its launch, according to a post by Zuckerberg on his Threads account. Zuckerberg, the CEO of Meta, also revealed that 2 million new users had signed up to Threads in the first two hours. In the Apple App Store’s “Social” category, the app quickly rose to number 27. One notable aspect of the platform is that it is now ad-free and users can link their Instagram accounts to it, keeping their followers and usernames. These features are likely to attract more users. Users of the app can participate in discussions, keep up to date with current events and connect with other users and artists who share their interests. Threads competes directly with Twitter thanks to its interactive features and text-based dialogue.