The fight between Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg continues. This time not in the boxing ring, but through Threads, a new Instagram program that is very similar to Twitter. Yet you can’t yet use it on an iPhone in the Netherlands. WANT editor Jeroen Kraak answers five pressing questions.
Better good copied than bad invented, Mark Zuckerberg must have thought when he came up with the idea for Instagram Threads. Still, there are plenty of questions surrounding the title.
iPhone: what is Instagram Threads?
Threads is a special app published by Instagram. It is almost an exact copy of Twitter. On the service, users can share short text messages with the rest of the world. Also, just like Twitter, it is possible to follow people and hand out ‘likes’. Retweeting’ is also just possible on your iPhone.
Threads means “threads” in Dutch, a term also often used for several consecutive tweets.
Instagram boss Mark Zuckerberg says the following about Threads via his own Threads: “I think there should be a public conversation app with more than 1 billion people using it. Twitter has had this capability, but still hasn’t achieved it. Hopefully we will succeed.”
Does Threads have the ability to knock Twitter off its throne?
Twitter, under the leadership of Elon Musk, is slowly digging its own grave right now. That’s because the social medium is taking all sorts of unpopular measures. The latest is that only paying users can see as many tweets as they want. Free users only have a maximum of 600.
This presents opportunities for competitors. Earlier we saw Mastodon grow in popularity, but that already seems to have stagnated. Now Instagram wants to dive into that gap on iPhone, and that medium has an important asset. After all, Instagram users can bring their own username. So using the service is heartily simple and accessible.
In the first seven hours that the app has been live, ten million people have already signed up. OK, that’s not yet as many as the number of users on Twitter itself (about 300 million), but it’s a start. Should the service really work well and switch fantastically with Instagram, this is a dangerous competitor for Twitter.
Dutch iPhone devices miss the boat
Threads has been launched in the United States and the United Kingdom, among others. In the Netherlands and the rest of the European Union, it is not yet possible to use Instagram’s service.
Instagram has not yet communicated the reason for this. It is probably due to lack of clarity around privacy laws in the European Union. Nevertheless, it may become possible later. Indeed, the Dutch language is already present in the iPhone app. So it is expected that the app will come to us and the rest of the European Union once that ambiguity is resolved.
How do you sign up for Threads?
Once Threads is in the Netherlands, signing up is a piece of cake. You download the iPhone app and then log in via the Instagram button you see. You then immediately have an account.
Once you do that, the app asks if it can import your profile picture and text from Instagram. You can also automatically follow all the people you follow on Instagram, provided they have an account. Of course, you can also manually select who you want to follow.
Does Instagram work better?
Right now, there are still features that don’t quite work optimally in Instagram Threads for iPhone. If you don’t follow anyone, you get to see random posts from people you don’t know. Something you don’t necessarily want.
Unfortunately, Threads also does not yet allow you to get a chronological timeline. So the algorithm determines what you see first.
There is also another big disadvantage. Namely, Threads is not so easy to delete because it is linked to Instagram. So if you want to delete your account, you can only do so by deleting your Instagram account as well. You can only deactivate it now. You’re probably not looking forward to that.