Zuckerberg In Sober Mood As half of Thread’s Subscribers Abandon App After Registration


Meta’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg was not in a very lively mood when he addressed employees of Meta in a company town hall this week, as they discussed the challenges faced by their new Twitter competitor, Threads, in retaining users.

It seems Twitter might be having the final laugh. Despite an impressive initial sign-up of over 100 million users within five days, more than half of them stopped actively using the app after their first day.

Zuckerberg acknowledged this challenge, stating “Obviously, if you have more than 100 million people sign up, ideally it would be awesome if all of them or even more than half of them stuck around. We’re not there yet,” Zuckerberg told employees yesterday, according to Reuters, which listened to audio of the event.”

Third-party data indicates that Threads experienced a significant decline in daily active users on Android, dropping from 49 million on July 7 to 23.6 million on July 14, and further down to 12.6 million on July 23, as reported by SimilarWeb.

The situation on iOS is yet to be revealed, but SimilarWeb suspects a similar pattern.

While the drop in users may seem discouraging, Zuckerberg reassured employees that user retention was better than expected.

He considered the drop-off “normal” and expressed confidence in improved retention as they add more features, such as a desktop version and search functionality.

Chris Cox, Chief Product Officer, suggested exploring “retention-driving hooks,” like allowing users on the Instagram app to access important Threads content.

Threads are integrated into Meta’s Instagram platform, enabling users to create a Threads profile as part of their Instagram account.

During an investor talk, Zuckerberg acknowledged Threads’ unexpected success, stating that it presented a substantial and immediate opportunity.

However, he also acknowledged the need to further develop basic functionality for the app and highlighted the challenge of attracting users to new standalone apps, a category where Meta has not had much success in the past.

Zuckerberg hinted that Threads might have benefited from user backlash against changes made by Elon Musk at Twitter (now known as “X”).

He suggested that the unique circumstances surrounding Twitter’s situation could have played a role in Threads’ potential success.

In his words, “It could just be that this is such an idiosyncratic case because of all of the factors that are happening around Twitter or X, I guess, it’s called now.”

Zuckerberg also used the opportunity to quell talks of any proposed caged match between him and Elon Musk when quizzed on the subject. He said, “Not sure if it’s going to come together.”

Threads was launched by Meta on July 5 and received almost 30 million signups in the first 24hrs. Many anticipated it will rival Twitter after its owner Elon Musk introduced some ludicrous changes including- a rate view limit that restricted the number of tweets users can view daily. Thread must have learned now that not all that glitters will remain gold.

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