It’s official: Instagram is unveiling its Threads app.
Meta Platforms Inc. CEO Mark Zuckerberg introduced the launch Wednesday night, framing Threads as “a brand new, separate area for real-time updates and public conversations.”
In different phrases, it’s gunning for Twitter, which has been present process a sequence of strategic shifts ever since Elon Musk acquired the platform final 12 months.
Whereas Threads is constructed round textual content updates, it won’t be restricted to phrases. It would additionally assist pictures and movies as much as 5 minutes lengthy, per Instagram.
As anticipated, Threads might be related to customers Instagram accounts, permitting for straightforward connections to followers, public figures or manufacturers. The textual content posts might be restricted to 500 characters. (Twitter, against this, has a 280 character restrict, although it rises to 10,000 for Twitter Blue subscribers.)
Instagram says accounts might be personal by default, with a essential feed comprised of accounts you comply with and prompt content material from creators you maybe haven’t found but. Threads will be posted to Instagram tales, or shared through a hyperlink.
Threads will launch in additional than 100 international locations, with apps for iOS and Android, with plans to roll out new options like an enhanced suggestion engine and search performance over time.
Maybe most notable is Instagram’s purpose to make Threads appropriate with ActivityPub, the open social networking protocol established by the World Broad Internet Consortium. If that occurs, Threads can be interoperable with different apps that assist the ActivityPub protocol, together with one other Twitter competitor, Mastodon, and WordPress.
“Our imaginative and prescient is that folks utilizing appropriate apps will be capable of comply with and work together with folks on Threads with out having a Threads account, and vice versa, ushering in a brand new period of various and interconnected networks,” the corporate wrote in a weblog submit. “Threads is Meta’s first app envisioned to be appropriate with an open social networking protocol – we hope that by becoming a member of this fast-growing ecosystem of interoperable companies, Threads will assist folks discover their group, it doesn’t matter what app they use.”
The launch of Threads is the end result of a consequential week in text-based social media, with Twitter launching a shock price limiting rule over the weekend, and with early indicators that Donald Trump’s Fact Social could search to desert its merger to go public.
Whereas to date there have been many rivals to Twitter (together with Mastodon, Fact Social, and Bluesky, amongst others), none have been capable of replicate the community results. Instagram is betting that by porting over its present social graphs, Threads could have a leg up on these nascent rivals.