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Threads loses traction: Majority of 100 million sign-ups abandon app


Posted: Saturday, July 29, 2023. 11:27 am CST.

By Breaking Belize News Staff: Meta’s newly launched text-based platform, Threads, is grappling with a significant user drop-off, despite registering more than 100 million users within its first five days of launch. This information was revealed by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg during an internal town hall event, as reported by Ars Technica.

In his address, Zuckerberg admitted that while sign-ups have been impressive, user retention hasn’t met expectations. “Obviously, if you have more than 100 million people sign up, ideally it would be awesome if all of them or even half of them stuck around. We’re not there yet,” he said.

Web analytics company SimilarWeb reported that Threads’ daily active users on Android fell from 49 million on July 7 to 12.6 million by July 23. While iOS user data is yet to be revealed, SimilarWeb anticipates a similar pattern of decrease.

According to Ars Technica, the company is working towards increasing user retention by introducing new features, such as a desktop version and search functionality, to the app. Chris Cox, Chief Product Officer, mentioned during the event that Meta is looking into “retention-driving hooks”, including greater visibility for Threads within the Instagram app.

Despite the setback, Zuckerberg remains positive about Threads’ trajectory. He referred to the user drop-off as “normal” and expects to see growth in retention as the app continues to evolve. “I’m quite optimistic about our trajectory. We saw unprecedented growth out of the gate and more importantly we’re seeing more people coming back daily than I’d expected,” Zuckerberg said.

The Facebook CEO went on to say that Threads’ initial success has been more than expected and highlighted the potential opportunity it presented. He also acknowledged the app’s shortcomings, stating that there is still “a lot of basic functionality to build” for Threads.

Speculations are that part of the surge in Threads’ user base could be attributed to users’ dissatisfaction with recent changes at Twitter, now owned by Elon Musk and renamed as “X”. “It could just be that this is such an idiosyncratic case because of all the factors that are happening around Twitter or X, I guess, it’s called now,” Zuckerberg said.

However, the app’s operations are currently restricted to around 100 countries, excluding the European Union, due to regulatory compliance issues. This is in addition to facing criticism for its data privacy practices, as it reportedly collects a significant amount of personal data from users.

While the journey for Threads has been a mixed bag so far, it remains to be seen how the platform will fare in its attempt to compete with well-established social media giants.


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