Meta’s highly anticipated Twitter competitor, Threads, debuted yesterday and already has over 23 million sign-ups. The app is pretty similar to Twitter, but it’s missing a key feature: a feed that only displays posts from people you follow. Currently, the app has a single feed that shows you posts from both people you follow and people you don’t. On the other hand, Twitter features a “Following” feed and a “For You” feed.
Instagram head Adam Mosseri responded to calls for Threads to have a Following feed and said it was “on the list” of features that the platform would like to add in the future. Mosseri made the comment in response to a post from YouTuber Marques Brownlee. In addition to Twitter, Instagram also features a “Following” list view in addition to the default algorithmic feed, so it makes sense for Threads to have one as well.
Other features that Mosseri noted are “on the list” include the ability to switch between different Threads accounts and the option to edit posts. Mosseri also stated that several basics are still missing from the app, such as the ability to search hashtags. It’s worth noting that although users have asked for the ability to double tap to like a post, Mosseri said that Meta tried to implement this, but the problem is that you need to be able to tap on a thread to open the full thread, and that “you don’t want to have an element that you can both tap and double tap.”
Threads allows Instagram users to authenticate with their existing credentials in order to post short updates, including text up to 500 characters; links; photos; and videos up to 5 minutes in length. At launch, Threads is available on iOS and Android in 100 countries, though not in the EU, reportedly due to concerns around adhering to local data privacy regulations.
While the Jack Dorsey–backed Twitter rival Bluesky has been growing in popularity in recent months, leveraging its own decentralized protocol, the AT Protocol, Instagram’s new app will soon offer support for ActivityPub — the same social networking protocol used by open source Twitter rival Mastodon, along with other federated apps.
To access Threads, users will first need to authenticate using their current Instagram login credentials. The app will then populate with their existing account details, like name, username, photo, and followers. Verification will also roll over to the new app.