Ask The Techspert: What Is the Threads App?

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On July 6, 2023, Threads, the new social media platform built as a companion app to Instagram under the Meta Umbrella, was released to the public. The Threads app focuses on text conversations with other followers rather than pictures and videos like Instagram and many other social media apps. Although Threads looks and functions more like Twitter, Threads’ audience, including Twitter users, are very excited and more optimistic towards Threads as a fresh and positive text-based alternative.

The Rise of Threads

As a companion app to Instagram, a user must already have an existing Instagram account to create a Threads account. Therefore, Threads is the easiest app to join for the 1.6 billion Instagram users.

Threads only took five days to reach 100 million users, making it the fastest-growing app ever. In retrospect, ChatGPT, the previous record holder, gathered 100 million users in 2 months. And before ChatGPT, TikTok held the record by reaching the mark in 9 months.

How to Get Started with Threads

The Threads app is currently only available on mobile. There is no computer version yet. Users can download the Threads app from the App Store (iOS) or the Google Play Store (Android). As you first launch the app, if you are an Instagram user, your credential will automatically carry over to Threads, and with one tap, your Threads account can be activated (See the picture below).

Image from Instagram Threads announcement article.

If you do not have an Instagram account, you must create one using the Instagram app before logging in to the Threads app. Your Instagram followers do not carry over to Threads. However, you can always follow the same accounts you do on Instagram and find new ones that pique your interest.

How to Interact on Threads

A post on Threads is called a thread and can be up to 500 characters long and include links, photos, and videos up to 5 minutes in length. On a Thread, a user has the options to like (heart), reply, repost, quote (repost + commentary), share (add to an Instagram Story, add to Instagram Feed, Tweet, copy, and share out via link). Sounds familiar? Yes, these are almost identical to Twitter’s functionalities.

Ask the Techspert: What is Threads?

Keep Your Threads Feed Safe

Your feed includes threads posted by people you follow and recommended content from other accounts you have yet to discover. If you encounter an unpleasant Thread, always remember that you can mute, hide, unfollow, and even report any Threads account directly from their thread on your feed. To learn more about the Threads app, click here to read its press release.

You also have the power to limit who can reply to each thread you post. To do so, see the picture below:

Image from Instagram Threads announcement article.

Your turn

Currently, the Threads app is in its initial release. There are numerous features that people at Meta are working on and will implement in future releases of the Threads app.

If you still have questions about Instagram or other social media apps, Senior Planet has you covered with the following free online lectures:

You can also ask any tech-related questions you might have directly to tech experts inside the group Ask a Tech Expert on the Senior Planet Community platform.

Lastly, be sure to follow Senior Planet on Threads as we navigate this new platform together!

Post by @senior.planet
View on Threads

Have you already activated your Threads account? If yes, comment below with your initial thoughts or questions regarding the Threads app.

Jonathan-Techspert-techTechspert Jonathan is Senior Planet’s Sr. Digital Community Relations and Product Specialist and a former technology trainer with the Senior Planet program in San Antonio. He is also an iOS developer with a background in Information Systems and Cyber Security.

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Photos from Instagram from Meta – “Introducing Threads: A New Way to Share with Text”

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