Meta’s Instagram Threads Set to Launch on July 6th, Promising a New Alternative to Twitter

Screenshot by Jay Peters / The Verge

Threads is the latest offering aims to bring communities together for engaging conversations and content sharing.

SILICON VALLEY – Meta’s Instagram Threads is poised to make its debut on July 6th, according to the recently discovered App Store listing, which showcases a version tailored for Apple’s iPhone. Additionally, keen-eyed observers have spotted an early listing on the Google Play Store, which initially appeared over the weekend.

In an effort to build anticipation, Meta has included a launch date teaser within the Instagram app itself. By entering keywords such as “threads” into the search box, users will notice a ticket icon emerging on the search bar. Tapping on it reveals a spinning ticket displaying the user’s Instagram username alongside a localized launch time, set for 10 AM ET on the 6th. This spinning ticket also features a QR code that directs users to, presumably the new platform’s web portal. Here, visitors are greeted with a countdown timer that is scheduled to conclude at 10 AM ET on the same day.

The official description of the app, obtained from the App Store, offers a concise overview of Threads: it is Instagram’s text-based conversation app. Threads aims to serve as a hub where communities converge to discuss a wide range of topics, spanning from current interests to future trends. Whatever users find captivating, they can effortlessly follow and directly connect with their favorite creators and like-minded individuals. Alternatively, they can cultivate a loyal following of their own, enabling them to share their ideas, opinions, and creativity with the world.

Both the App Store and Google Play Store listings present a series of similar screenshots, illustrating the process of logging in with an Instagram handle, discovering followed accounts from Instagram within the new app, and posting in an interface reminiscent of Twitter, Mastodon, Bluesky, and other text-focused social applications.

Screenshot by Jay Peters / The Verge

Threads, the anticipated competitor to Twitter by Meta, is expected to provide a fresh social media experience for users.

During a recent companywide meeting, Meta executives disclosed that Instagram Threads will integrate with the decentralized social media protocol employed by Mastodon, known as ActivityPub. This revelation sparked discussions about a potential faceoff between Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk, as an executive stated, “We’ve been hearing from creators and public figures who are interested in having a platform that is sanely run.”

The announcement of Threads’ launch comes at a tumultuous time for its main rival, Twitter. In a recent move, the social media network owned by Elon Musk implemented changes that prevented unregistered users from viewing tweets and imposed temporary rate limits for logged-in users, potentially blocking them after reading a substantial number of posts within a day. These alterations led to widespread disruptions over the weekend, leaving users unable to browse the service.

Furthermore, Twitter has abruptly introduced significant modifications to TweetDeck, a popular tool among journalists and social media professionals. This development coincided with the app experiencing technical difficulties due to data-scraping efforts by AI models. To compound matters, TweetDeck is slated to become a paid feature in approximately a month. Faced with these challenges, numerous Twitter users turned to Bluesky over the holiday weekend, only to encounter temporary signup suspensions as the service grappled with the influx of new users. In contrast, the CEO of Mastodon expressed confidence in their platform’s performance.

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Responding to news of the Threads launch date, Elon Musk engaged with several tweets highlighting the potential data collection mentioned in Meta’s App Store listing. In one of his responses, he quipped, “Thank goodness they’re so sanely run.” Meanwhile, former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey posted a screenshot of Threads’ data collection notice, accompanied by the caption, “All your Threads are belong to us.” – The Verge