Most Downloaded App of All-Time Quickly Lost Users, While X (Twitter) Continues to Falter Under Musk
The rebranded Twitter of 2023 — now known as X — has faced constant backlash due to the numerous changes made since Musk took full ownership last October; while Zuckerberg’s Threads quickly faded after a strong launch.
Arguments from millions of users have remained constant surrounding topics such as the cost of the blue verification check, firing more than three quarters of the staff, and lastly, allowing figures to have a platform who the public considers to be radical or dangerous.
All of a sudden, Threads was the most rapidly downloaded app of all time, eclipsing 30 million users in its first 16 hours, and at one point reaching over 100 million registered — far superior to the impressive statistics of the recently launched ChatGPT.
Ryan Mac, a technology reporter who covers Twitter — now X — with the New York Times has “reported on Twitter’s steep plunge in ad sales, mass layoffs at the company, service outages on the platform and policy changes surrounding its verification of users’ accounts, or the so-called blue-check apocalypse.”
In short, it seemed that Threads was what many users had been looking for. A simple, user-friendly alternative.
Musk was threatening a lawsuit against Meta for hiring former Twitter employees that had been fired — which was 80% of the company’s staff — claiming that trade secrets and other critical information was used to combat Twitter, with hopes to put Threads instantly ahead.
Many seemed drawn to Threads due to their dislike of Musk, as well as the ability to navigate through a new app — something that proved rather refreshing to many.
There was talk that the app holding the most political influence for 2024 was to be up for grabs, as many of the ‘well-known’ front runners for office had, and still have, yet to show face on Threads.
Since July, there has been legitimate concern surrounding Threads such as data privacy and hopes for a new process when looking to delete or deactivate one’s account — ideally, not having to delete the attached Instagram account with it. This too may be a direct result for the loss of over 50 million users.
According to the NY Post, “Zuckerberg’s team has steadily added features to Threads, which has already lost more than half of the 100 million users who initially signed up for the app for its July 5 debut. Meta has faced criticism from X owner Elon Musk and others who allege Threads is merely a clone of Twitter.”
Some political influencers were afraid that they wouldn’t have the fair chance to speak their mind, like conservative political voice Tomi Lahren. Her first post asked, “Will Meta be censoring conservative thought here too?”
This is another reason why users — at least those who lean right — may prefer X, despite the complete makeover given by Musk as of late, which he claimed was necessary in making X an “everything app.”
The NY Post also stated, “According to analytics company Similarweb, Threads’ daily active users plummeted to 23.6 million on July 14 after hitting a peak of 49 million on July 7.”
At the end of July, Threads maintained 8 million daily users, down 82% from its high point.
“By comparison, X boasted 238 million users before Musk took the company private in October, the company said in an earnings report last year,” said ABC News.
Whether or not Threads will survive as a long-term alternative to Twitter will be up to Meta’s decisions in addressing the public’s worries — which slowly they have, by putting posts in chronological order, and showing ones liked posts — as well as which political influencers and candidates may choose to migrate over.
Either way, it seemed that Musk was gravely concerned for Twitter’s future, but to his luck, he currently has the upper hand.