In the ever-evolving landscape of social media, Meta’s new application, Threads, has made a significant impact. Within just 18 hours of its launch, Threads amassed over 30 million sign-ups, marking it as a formidable competitor to Elon Musk’s Twitter. This rapid growth can be attributed to Meta’s strategic use of its existing Instagram platform and its vast user base.
Threads, often referred to as the “Twitter-Killer,” quickly rose to prominence, becoming the most downloaded free app on Apple’s App Store in both the UK and the US. This success came amidst a public feud between Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter’s Elon Musk, which included verbal jabs and even discussions of a potential mixed martial arts fight in Las Vegas.
Analysts have praised Meta’s execution of Threads, highlighting its stellar performance and user-friendly interface. Jasmine Enberg, an Insider Intelligence principal analyst, likened the competition between Meta and Twitter to a cage match, with Zuckerberg delivering a significant blow through the successful launch of Threads.
However, this success has not come without controversy. Twitter has threatened legal action against Meta, with a letter from a Twitter lawyer to Zuckerberg revealing the potential for a lawsuit. The specifics of the potential lawsuit remain undisclosed, and Twitter has yet to comment on the matter publicly.
In response, Meta has clarified that none of its Threads engineering team members are former Twitter employees, seemingly distancing itself from any allegations of intellectual property theft or unfair competition practices.
The launch of Threads comes at a time when Twitter is undergoing significant changes, including controversial decisions following Elon Musk’s acquisition. This situation has provided Meta with a unique opportunity to capitalize on Twitter’s missteps and establish itself as a well-funded rival in the social media landscape.
Niklas Myhr, a marketing professor at Chapman University, believes that the timing of Threads’ release gives it a fighting chance to unseat Twitter. If users continue to adopt Threads at the current rate, advertisers are expected to follow suit, further strengthening Meta’s position in the market.
While other Twitter-like apps such as Mastodon and Bluesky have user bases in the millions and hundreds of thousands respectively, they pale in comparison to Twitter’s 229 million monthly active users as of May last year. However, with the impressive initial uptake of Threads, it seems Meta may be poised to challenge these numbers.
The launch of Meta’s Threads has shaken up the social media landscape, demonstrating the potential for new platforms to rise rapidly in popularity and user base. As the competition between Meta and Twitter continues, it remains to be seen how this will shape the future of social media.