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Threads Is Up to 150M Monthly Active Users

Meta has reported that Threads, its Twitter-like social app, which Mark Zuckerberg launched to spite Elon Musk, has now surpassed 150 million monthly active users.

Threads 150 million users

I’m kidding, Zuck didn’t launch Threads to spite Elon. Well not entirely.

Threads was originally launched in July last year, with the stated aim of providing a more “positive and creative space” for people to express their ideas.

Though Twitter, of course, was the inspiration.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said that his view for Threads is to provide a “public conversations app that’s a bit more positive,” in comparison to what Twitter became, and what X now is.

So it isn’t a direct push against Elon Musk as such. But also, it kind of is.

And that is seemingly resonating with more people over time. Threads reached 130 million monthly actives in February, and has added an extra 20 million in two months.

Which isn’t great news for Musk’s X experiment.

While Elon and Co. keep sharing vague stats to suggest that X usage is rising, while also claiming that more people are turning to the app because they want “the truth,” away from the media spin, the actual usage data, reported by both X and third party analysts, shows that X is not growing its audience, basically at all, over time.

Last month, X shared that it’s now serving 250 million daily active users, which is the exact same amount that it reported in November 2022, just weeks after Musk took over at the app. That means that, according to its own reporting, X has seen no growth in daily users in 16 months.

Third party insights, meanwhile, shared by various independent providers, show that X has seen between a 13% and 30% decline in usage over the past year.

Add to this a more recent report from Apptopia, which suggests that Threads is now seeing more daily active users than X in the U.S., and it’s clear that Meta’s bet on a Twitter alternative is paying off, and could present significant opportunities for an expansion of its business.

And that could come sooner than many expected.

Meta had originally said that it wouldn’t look to bring paid ads to Threads till it had reached “hundreds of millions” of users, but Digiday recently reported that Meta ad execs are now informing brand partners that ads could be coming to the app in the second half of this year.

I guess, based on its growth trajectory, it is possible that both statements could be true, as Threads could be on track to reach 200 million users by around October. But a lot still has to go right for that to happen, and the likelihood of Threads continuing to add 10 million new users each month seems unlikely, unless it comes up with some major lures to draw them across.

And the Threads team is working on this.

They’ve been working with influencers to establish new partnerships, while they’re also looking to provide more incentives for sports communities, a key holdout on X, to merge across to the new app.

They recently had a big win, with Taylor Swift posting her first Thread to promote her new album, and it’s small, gradual shifts like this that could well see Threads overtake X as the real time social media app of choice.

Or, alternatively, the Threads team could just wait for Elon to keep alienating members of the former bird app.

That might actually end up being the best growth strategy for Threads, with Musk’s divisive political stances and platform updates pushing more and more people away from the app. Which Threads can then scoop up, building onto its core audience, and maybe, over time, just being similar enough to Twitter will win out in this respect.

But it’s not there yet.

It’s important to note that Threads has 150 million monthly active users. X has 250 million daily actives, with over 500 million people logging into the app on a monthly basis. So Threads still has a way to go, but it is gaining, and it’s got far more momentum than X, at least at present.

Meta’s decision to avoid politics and real time news in the app seems like a potential impediment, but clearly, Threads is winning over more users, and as more communities become more active in the app, it could, at some stage, reach a tipping point where it overpowers the incumbent.   

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