London () — The rivalry between Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk has just escalated to a new level.
Facebook tried to compete with Twitter in many ways over the years, including copying Twitter-exclusive features like hashtags and trending topics. But now, Facebook’s parent company has just dealt the biggest blow to Twitter yet.
On Wednesday, Meta officially launched a new app called Threads, which claims to offer a space for real-time online conversations, a feature that has long been Twitter’s main selling point.
The app seems to have a lot of similarities to Twitter, from the design to the product description. That description, first posted earlier this week, emphasizes the potential for building a following and connecting with like-minded people.
“Threads is where communities come together to discuss everything from the topics you care about today to what’s trending tomorrow,” it said. “Whatever you’re interested in, you can follow and connect directly with your favorite creators and others who love the same things, or build a loyal following to share your ideas, opinions, and creativity with the world.”
Meta said that messages posted to Threads will be limited to 500 characters. The company reported that the application will be available in 100 countries through iOS and Android.
The new app joins a growing list of rivals to Twitter and could pose its biggest threat given Meta’s vast resources and massive audience.
Meta’s bet comes amid a new bout of turmoil at Twitter, which suffered a blackout over the weekend, followed by the announcement that the site had imposed temporary limits on the number of tweets its users can read while using the service. application.
Musk, the billionaire owner of the platform, said these restrictions had been put in place “to deal with extreme levels of data scraping and system manipulation.”
Commenting on the release of Threads on Monday, Musk tweeted: “Thank God they’re so well run,” echoing comments by Meta execs who seemed to mock Musk’s erratic behavior.
Since taking over Twitter in October, Musk has turned the social network upside down, cutting himself off from advertisers and some of its most prominent users.
Now he is looking for a way to make the platform grow again. Twitter announced this monday that users would soon have to pay for TweetDeck, a tool that makes it easy to organize and monitor the accounts they follow.
Twitter is also trying to invade Meta’s domain.
In May, Twitter added encrypted messaging and said calls would follow, developments that could allow the platform to compete with Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, also owned by Meta.
Musk and Zuckerberg’s rivalry could soon extend beyond business and into the ring. Last month, the two men discussed the possibility of a cage fight, with the Las Vegas arena that hosts the Ultimate Fighting Championship apparently the favorite venue for the bout.
‘s Hanna Ziady contributed to this report.