Threads, the recently launched social media platform by Meta, aims to compete with Twitter. While Threads has been referred to as a Twitter clone, it possesses several notable differences that set it apart from Elon Musk’s popular app. Many of these distinctions may be attributed to Threads’ limited feature set upon its initial release, with Meta planning to introduce new features in the future. Let’s delve into seven important differences between Threads and Twitter that you should know.
1. Registration Process
Those that want to use Threads must have an Instagram account. When creating a new profile, Threads provides the option to transfer information from the linked Instagram account, such as bio, profile picture, link, and blue verification badge, if applicable.
Additionally, users can easily follow accounts they already follow on Instagram. In contrast, Twitter offers various options for creating a new account. Users can create a new Twitter account conventionally or log in using their existing Google or Apple accounts.
Both Threads and Twitter allow users to set their accounts as either private or public. Since Threads and Instagram accounts are interconnected, deleting a Threads account requires deleting the associated Instagram account as well.
2. Character Limit
Meta has confirmed that Threads users can upload text-based posts with a character limit of up to 500. Moreover, Threads allows users to share photos, GIFs, and videos with a duration of up to five minutes.
On the other hand, Twitter imposes a character limit of 280 for regular users. However, Twitter Blue subscribers have the option to tweet longer content, up to 25,000 characters. In addition to photos, videos, and GIFs, Twitter users can also include polls in their tweets.
3. Timeline & Trending Topics
Content uploaded on Threads is referred to as a “thread,” whereas Twitter uses the term “tweet.” Threads features a single timeline that includes threads from followed accounts and algorithm-recommended threads.
Currently, there is no option to view threads chronologically or a dedicated tab for viewing threads solely from followed accounts. In contrast, Twitter offers two tabs: “Following” displays tweets from followed accounts in chronological order, while “For You” presents a mix of tweets from followed accounts and algorithmically recommended tweets.
Currently, Threads lacks a feature like Trending Topics, which allows users to discover popular discussion topics. However, Meta has stated that additional features will be added to Threads to facilitate thread discovery and connect users with preferred creators.
4. Content Upload
Threads users can create threads similar to Twitter by pressing the Enter key on their keyboard three times to add the next thread. Meanwhile, on Twitter, users can simply press the “+” button in the bottom-right corner to add the next tweet.
At its launch, Threads did not include a drafts feature for saving ongoing threads, unlike Twitter, which already offers this functionality. Twitter users can also schedule tweet postings through the web.
Currently, Threads does not support private messaging (DM) functionality like Twitter. However, Threads allows users to easily access other users’ Instagram profiles through the app.
5. Data Collection
Upon Threads’ initial App Store release, Twitter users raised concerns about the types of data collected by the app. In addition to common data such as contacts, location, and search history, Threads also collects more sensitive information like “health & fitness” and financial data.
Twitter also collects user data such as purchases, contact information, browsing history, and other commonly collected data.
6. Platform Openness
Threads will support the ActivityPub platform, a protocol also used in decentralized networks like Mastodon. This protocol enables users to follow and interact with accounts on other platforms.
Moreover, users will be able to migrate their accounts and audience from Threads to other social networking platforms that support ActivityPub.
However, ActivityPub support is not yet available in Threads. In contrast, Twitter is a closed and standalone platform. Twitter previously required users to log in to read tweets and view user profiles.
While Threads may share similarities with Twitter, it distinguishes itself through unique features and functionality. From the registration process to character limits, timeline organization, and other, Threads and Twitter provide users with distinct experiences.
Understanding these differences can help users make informed decisions about which platform aligns best with their preferences and needs in the social media landscape.