- Elon Musk hinted at his plans for “X,” an “every thing app,” after Twitter reportedly merged into X Corp.
- Musk has mentioned his plans for a WeChat-like app on Twitter and in non-public texts over time.
Since Elon Musk purchased Twitter final 12 months, his grasp plan for creating an “every thing app” has begun to take form.
On Tuesday, the billionaire cryptically hinted at his plans when he tweeted “X.” Whereas Musk didn’t elaborate on the tweet, it got here after it was reportedly revealed Twitter had merged right into a shell firm referred to as X Corp. On Tuesday, Bloomberg reported that Twitter had been absorbed into X Corp, citing a doc from April 4 that was submitted as an exhibit in a lawsuit towards Twitter and its cofounder Jack Dorsey.
The publication reported that the billionaire had created a “trio of holding firms in Delaware with a variation of the title ‘X Holdings”’ when he first provided to purchase the corporate final 12 months.
It is unclear what the brand new shell firm will imply for Twitter, although it hints at Musk’s bigger plans for the social media firm.
For the billionaire, Twitter represents step one towards one thing he calls “X,” his imaginative and prescient for a brand new form of social media platform that almost all within the US have not skilled earlier than.
The Tesla CEO has said the acquisition of Twitter will act as “an accelerant” to creating X — jump-starting the method by three to 5 years.
Musk has been speaking about constructing X for months. In August, when a Twitter consumer requested him whether or not he had thought-about creating his personal social platform, he replied, “X.com” — an online area he purchased over 5 years in the past. At Tesla’s annual shareholder assembly that very same month, Musk mentioned he had “a fairly grand imaginative and prescient” for X as “one thing that may be very helpful to the world.”
Whereas Musk hasn’t absolutely clarified whether or not he plans to show Twitter into X or use it to construct a completely new platform, the billionaire has dropped a number of hints concerning his plans to shake up the world of social media.
Here is what he is mentioned publicly — and privately — concerning the thought.
A brand new super-app
X would not be the primary app making an attempt to do a little bit of every thing. In actual fact, Musk indicated in Could that he may search for inspiration from Tencent’s WeChat, a Chinese language social media juggernaut that is one of many largest super-apps on this planet.
WeChat acts as an all-encompassing service that features messaging and video chatting, video video games, photograph sharing, experience providers, meals supply, banking, and procuring.
“In case you’re in China, you form of dwell on WeChat,” he mentioned. “It does every thing — form of like Twitter, plus PayPal, plus a complete bunch of issues, and all rolled into one, with a terrific interface. It is actually a wonderful app, and we do not have something like that outdoors of China.”
At his first city corridor with Twitter employees final 12 months, the billionaire mentioned there is a “actual alternative” to create an analogous app outdoors of China.
“I feel if we may obtain that, and even near that with Twitter, it will be an immense success,” he mentioned.
Matt Navarra, a prime social media marketing consultant, instructed Insider it would not make sense to intestine Twitter and switch it right into a super-app, however it may turn into a form of “mini-app” inside Musk’s bigger platform.
Personal texts a couple of blockchain-based platform
Musk has additionally mentioned making a social media platform constructed on a blockchain. The billionaire is thought for his love of cryptocurrencies, together with Bitcoin and Dogecoin.
Final April, the billionaire privately outlined his thought for a “Doge” social media platform in texts to his youthful brother, Kimbal Musk. The messages had been made public as a part of Musk’s court docket battle with Twitter.
“I’ve an thought for a blockchain social media system that does each funds and quick textual content messages/hyperlinks like Twitter,” Musk texted. “It’s important to pay a tiny quantity to register your message on the chain, which is able to minimize out the vest majority of spam and bots.”
Musk mentioned the positioning would have a “huge real-time database” that may maintain everlasting copies of messages and followers, and a “Twitter-like app in your cellphone” that may entry the database within the cloud.
In February, the Monetary Instances reported that the billionaire plans so as to add crypto performance to Twitter after the positioning is permitted for funds. The social media firm has utilized for a collection of licenses to permit the platform to course of funds, a serious function of superapps like WeChat, per the FT.
A subscription mannequin
Musk’s thought for a blockchain-based platform feeds into a few of his discussions round Twitter’s income mannequin.
The billionaire has repeatedly expressed his distaste for advertisements, however promoting makes up the overwhelming majority of Twitter’s income. In a since-deleted tweet from final April, Musk mentioned the corporate ought to exist with out advertisements.
As a substitute, Musk has talked about being profitable from Twitter through different strategies, together with charging some customers to be on the positioning. Shortly after shopping for Twitter, Musk started charging Twitter customers for the app’s blue examine mark.
The billionaire has additionally famous the app may assist foster funds on to customers. Twitter launched a “Suggestions” function in 2021 that features an choice to pay customers with Bitcoin.
“It is necessary for content material creators to have a income share,” Musk mentioned at a Could occasion for the “All-In” podcast.
In February, Musk mentioned Twitter will quickly launch an early model of a program that may enable some creators to receives a commission for his or her tweets.
An emphasis on free speech
No matter Musk builds, count on it to have a much more free-wheeling free speech coverage than Twitter immediately.
The billionaire has been vital of Twitter’s ban on some customers, together with its everlasting ban on former president Donald Trump following the revolt on the US Capitol. In November, Musk adopted by means of on his promise to reinstate Trump’s account.
Social media knowledgeable Navarro mentioned firms are unlikely to need to promote subsequent to posts that could possibly be labeled as unsavory, however famous it could possibly be a superb transfer for Twitter to diversify its income sources.
A battle towards bots
One factor is evident all through Musk’s dealings with Twitter — the billionaire’s social media platform can be tasked with eliminating rip-off accounts.
Musk has referred to as bots on Twitter the “single most annoying problem” and made the variety of rip-off accounts on the positioning the centerpiece of his makes an attempt to wiggle out of the acquisition months in the past.
In an interview at TED 2022, Musk cited this subject as the very first thing he would change as Twitter’s new proprietor.
Since taking on the social media firm the billionaire has had much less to say on the difficulty, however on Monday, he said Twitter’s subscription course of will assist get rid of “impersonation fraud” on the positioning.