Threads the new messaging app for Instagram designed for sharing status, location and more with close friends
Facebook is developing a new messaging app called Threads for Instagram, Discussioni, which aims to promote constant and intimate sharing between users and their closest friends. Threads, designed as a complementary app for Instagram, encourages users to automatically share location, speed and battery life with friends, along with more classic text messages, photos and videos, using Instagram's creative tools. The app, designed to be shared with your list of close friends on Instagram, now internally being tested in Facebook.
Instagram has not provided official comments on the matter.
Threads: a replacement for Direct?
In May, Instagram stopped working on Direct, a standalone messaging app which he had been developing since the end of 2017. At the time, executives had claimed that the beta testers were annoyed by having to switch from Instagram to a second app whenever they wanted to send a message, but the company was interested in building new experiences of messaging. Instagram messaging employees were transferred to the Facebook Messenger team earlier this year as part of a larger consolidation between the parent company and its valuable acquisition.
A competitor for Snapchat?
A messaging app focused on close friends may be more popular. This, moreover, is what Snapchat is today already for a large part of its users. Several reports indicated that the average Snapchat user spends more time in the app than the average Instagram user. For Facebook and Instagram, which have long aspired to an involvement similar to that of Snapchat among younger users, Threads could be a move to snatch a slice of the public from the rival.
Threads: how it will be
The leaked screens show an app designed to promote a constant and automatic sharing between users and people in their list of close friends on Instagram. By activating automatic sharing, Threads regularly updates the status, giving friends a real-time view of location, speed and more. At the moment, according to some rumors, it seems that Threads does not intend to show the position in real time, but could communicate generically that a friend on the move.
You can also update your status manually. The design app is the last of the different options available to automate the sharing of the state using the sensors of the mobile phone and sharing the status in a simple and immediate way. In the past, even an app called Status had tried something similar in 2014 and other free apps had taken a similar approach at different times.
The focus on messaging
However, the core of Threads functions seems to be messaging and the product looks very similar to the one already present within Instagram. Friends' messages are displayed in a central feed, with a green dot indicating which of your friends are currently active. If a friend has recently published a story, you can also view it from within Threads. Threads also has a camera function, which you can use to take pictures or videos and send them to close friends.
Not clear when development and testing could be completed. In March, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, said he saw private messaging as the future of the company. Threads seems to represent the last effort of the company aimed at transforming this vision into reality.