(Photo: STEFANI REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images) This photo illustration created in Washington, DC, on July 6, 2023, shows the logo of Threads, an Instagram app, next to its page on the App Store. More than 10 million people signed up for Threads, Meta’s Twitter rival, in the first hours after its launch, the company’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg said on July 6.
Instagram’s Threads is set to unveil Trends, a much-anticipated feature, to compete with X (formerly Twitter), as the social media platform wants to attract and engage people with new services to improve its online presence.
A Threads user who unintentionally saw a screenshot that a Threads staffer posted over the weekend discovered the new Trending feature. In the snapshot, popular topics were numbered and their “discussion threads,” or active debates, were displayed, according to a TechCrunch report.
User Willian Max believes the screenshot was intended for Meta’s employee network. Reports from 9to5Mac and Mashable indicate that this Threads feature would launch sooner or later.
A bold move
Unlike X (formerly Twitter), the Threads Trends feature does not appear to include additional trending lists by topics such as news, sports and entertainment or personalized “For You” trends.
However, this trending topics feature of Threads is considered vital for the social media platform in its battle against rival X. Threads, run by Instagram, exploits the constant changes and interruptions of Elon Musk’s X to attract users. Mastodon, Bluesky, Pebble and Spill also challenge X’s dominance on social media.
Meta continues to release new Threads features despite a reduction in active users. Some power users are unhappy with Elon Musk’s constant changes to X and are considering switching to Threads.
Discussions struggle to maintain momentum
After launching with 100 million signups in five days, Threads saw a decline. Elon Musk said Mark Zuckerberg “committed the cardinal sin” of boring platforms.
Threads has struggled to maintain momentum after more than 100 million signups in its first week. SimilarWeb estimates that the number of daily active Android users on Threads peaked at 49.3 million on July 7 and fell to 10.3 million a month later on August 7. SimilarWeb data shows that even Threads users are spending less time on the platform. Even though X remains popular, he boasts 21 million assets users in the United States during the first half of September (down slightly from 22 million in July), according to Benzinga.
In August, Meta announced the release of a desktop version of Threads. Threads was originally exclusively accessible through smartphone apps when it launched.
Meta has been adding web browser features to Threads in recent weeks. Meta will struggle to reignite user enthusiasm and deliver interesting content, analysts say. Threads’ decline in user engagement shows the difficulties companies face when they release a barely viable product in the hopes of increasing user engagement with subsequent upgrades.
Meta’s commitment to the long-term viability of Threads is being called into question as it expands its functionality. Daniel Ives, senior equity research analyst at Wedbush Securities, believes Meta needs to fully commit to Threads. “They can’t have a single toe in the water. They have to dive into the deep end of the pool,” he commented: as cited by Washington Post.
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