Washington, D.C. – In a move aimed at challenging Elon Musk’s Twitter, Instagram, owned by tech giant Meta, introduced its new app called ‘Threads’ on Wednesday. Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Meta Platforms Inc., announced the launch, presenting Threads as “a new, separate space for real-time updates and public conversations.” This app will be directly linked to users’ Instagram profiles, facilitating connections with followers, influencers, and brands. Text posts on Threads will have a limit of 500 characters, in contrast to Twitter’s 280-character restriction (which extends to 10,000 characters for Twitter Blue subscribers). Additionally, Instagram states that accounts on Threads will be private by default, featuring a main feed consisting of accounts users follow, as well as suggested content from undiscovered authors. Threads can be shared on Instagram stories or through links, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The app will be available in over 100 countries on both iOS and Android platforms, with Meta planning to introduce new features such as an enhanced recommendation engine and improved search functionality in the future.
Meta expressed its vision of enabling people using compatible apps to follow and engage with Threads users without requiring a Threads account. The company aims to create an era of diverse and interconnected networks. The Hollywood Reporter quoted Meta’s blog post stating, “Threads is Meta’s first app designed to be compatible with an open social networking protocol. We hope that by joining this rapidly growing ecosystem of interoperable services, Threads will help people find their community, regardless of the app they use.”
The App Store description of Threads highlights its purpose as a platform for communities to engage in discussions about various topics of interest, from current events to upcoming trends. It emphasizes the ability to follow and connect directly with favorite creators and like-minded individuals, as well as build a loyal following to share ideas, opinions, and creativity. While alternatives to Twitter have emerged, such as Mastodon, Truth Social, and Bluesky, none have been able to replicate the network effects achieved by Twitter. Instagram believes that leveraging its existing social graphs will give Threads an advantage over competitors, as reported by The Hollywood Reporter.
With the introduction of Threads, Instagram aims to carve out a significant presence in the realm of real-time updates and public conversations, offering users a distinct platform to connect, engage, and share their interests within diverse and interconnected networks.