So what’s new on Threads, and Does anybody still care?
Reports show Threads usage is rapidly declining as people are reverting to the social apps they already know and love.
Despite the doomsayers, the Threads team is working to develop new functionality. It includes voice posts, a desktop app, hashtag support and many more.
What are voice notes and what is their purpose?
First off, Threads is reportedly developing voice notes. It will provide another way to connect to the app.
As revealed by app researcher Alessandro Paluzzi, Threads users will soon be able to attach a voice clip. It is in addition to images and videos that will enhance their posts.
Well, voice notes are a small deal for most Western users. Her voice elements are important, and in these regions where several languages are spoken, not everyone can write each as fluently.
In India, for example, there are over 100 languages spoken nationwide, and while many have learned to communicate in different audible forms, literacy levels still need to be higher.
As such, voice notes serve a direct and practical purpose. It could help a lot in maximizing the use of social apps that are among billions of people.
So yeah, it may not be a big deal for you, but still, it is potentially a massive addition to facilitate broader adoption.
What is a desktop app, and what is its use?
On a desktop app, Mark Zuckerberg and Instagram Chief Adam Mosseri noted that a desktop version of Threads is coming very soon. Both are quite confident about the new tool already being tested internally by the Threads team.
Earlier this week, Mosseri noted that there are still some bugs in the desktop process. But that question ended with Zuckerberg posting a “Soon” emoji in response to a similar question.
A desktop app will enable journalists and publishers to be more active on Threads. By having it open and on-screen during their daily workflow. It could be a big step in facilitating more engagement and activity within the platform.
There are some smaller functional additions too. It includes a “Reposts” tab on user profiles. It will let you see what each user has shared.
In addition to their original posts and replies, reposts will also get included in people’s “Following” feeds. It means they will act more like retweets and reap more reach-oriented benefits.
What is Hashtag support and what it can do?
Finally, on hashtag support, Mosseri is leaning towards not supporting hashtags generally in the app with tags. Instead, he wants them to be incorporated into general text searches.
Now, that makes some sense. Although, it will be interesting to see whether users prefer to have clickable tags and conversation links against regular text queries.
Are Threads already declining and getting dead?
Few can answer whether Threads is already dead, with usage declining. However, the reports are true that app needs to capitalize on its early momentum.
This week’s reports suggest that Threads usage has dropped by 79%, from a high of 2.3 million active users in early July to just 576,000 as of the 7th of August.
Threads have yet to be able to maintain that early hype. Hamstrung by functional limitations, the app sits on 124 million members.
It has already added only 24 million more users over the last five weeks after racing to 100 million in its first five days.
Of course, no one would expect Threads to maintain that initial growth rate. But the fact that it has declined so significantly is a concern.
Several users and people from prominent media circles are now proclaiming the app dead on arrival as Meta fails to grasp the true value of what made Twitter so great.
So should you wave at the hype train, and as it departs, you can move on with your day?
Some users would not necessarily count Threads out entirely.
Meta itself has repeatedly noted that engagement in the app is strong. It is a good sign of future potential. Of course, Meta would say that.
But Threads has maintained a level of relevance with journalists and other high-profile cast-offs from X. These people and media organizations have been alienated by attacks of Elon Musk, among other questionable stances and decisions.
If Threads can maximize its appeal to these cohorts, it still stands a chance to win significant audience share from X, and that would be a game changer.
In several ways, Musk has likely underrated this audience’s value and the attention they bring now if they start to drag that attention elsewhere.
It could still make Threads a significant app, fragmenting the traditional Twitter user base.
So will Threads win out?
Functional updates will help, and there is enough support for the platform or opposition to X. It fuels the fire and makes it a viable alternative.
The current numbers could be better, but the engagement on Threads remains strong. I can see a lot of more significant conversations switching to the app and away from X, as Elon constantly enforces his ideologies through X policy.
Do you want to know more?
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