Meta’s Twitter challenger Threads set to launch this week

4 Jul 2023

Image: © Syifa5610/

Images of the upcoming app show a lot of similarities to Twitter, which has been criticised for limiting the number of tweets users can read each day.

Meta appears to be jumping on the current chaos surrounding Twitter, as its long-awaited challenger app is scheduled to launch later this week.

The app – Threads – is linked to Instagram and will launch on 6 July, according to a pre-order version on the Apple App Store. The app has also been spotted for pre-order on the Google Play Store in some European countries, Insider reports.

Images of the app show a similar layout to Twitter, with features such as posting, replying and reposting user’s “threads”. The images suggest users will be able to use the app with their existing Instagram accounts.

“Threads is where communities come together to discuss everything from the topics you care about today to what’ll be trending tomorrow,” Meta said on the Threads App Store page.

Four images of phone screens, showing details of the Threads app.

Example images of the Threads app, taken from its App Store page. Image: Meta

“Whatever it is you’re interested in, you can follow and connect directly with your favourite creators and others who love the same things – or build a loyal following of your own to share your ideas, opinions and creativity with the world.”

Some criticism has been raised about the amount of data Meta takes from its users. Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey tweeted the privacy information of the app, with the caption “All your Threads are [sic] belong to us”.

Another Twitter challenger

The Threads app has been in development for some time by Meta. In March, the company confirmed to multiple media outlets that it was working on a “standalone decentralised social network” for sharing text-based content, codenamed P92.

The move was seen as Meta trying to capitalise on a growing demand for an alternative to Twitter since Elon Musk’s takeover last year.

Images of the app were leaked in May, with reports that the Instagram add-on would be released this summer.

Twitter has been in a chaotic period since Musk’s takeover, with a significantly reduced workforce, multiple outages and concerns among advertisers.

But recent developments have caused an outcry among Twitter’s user base. In the last week, the site has imposed limits the number of tweets that accounts can see in a day.

It is unclear if these limits will be changed in the future or how long the “temporary measure” will go on for. The limit sparked an intense reaction by some Twitter users, with tags such as Twitterdown and RIP Twitter spreading over the weekend.

The site is also moving Tweetdeck, a popular management app used by businesses, behind a paywall next month, meaning only verified accounts will be able to use the app.

Other competitors have been benefitting from the recent issues on Twitter. Mastodon founder Eugen Rochko claimed the site’s active users jumped by 294,000 last weekend, which is around the time Twitter imposed the reading limit.

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic