Instagram parent company Facebook is developing a new messaging app called Threads that is meant to promote constant, intimate sharing between users and their closest friends, we have learnt that Threads, which is designed as a companion app to Instagram, invites users to automatically share their location, speed, and battery life with friends, along with more typical text, photo, and video messages using Instagram’s creative tools. The app, which is designed for sharing with your “close friends” list on Instagram, is now being tested internally at Facebook.
Instagram declined to comment.
In May, Instagram ceased work on Direct, a standalone messaging app that it had been developing since late 2017. At the time, executives said that beta testers were frustrated about having to switch between Instagram and a second app whenever they wanted to send a message. But the company has remained interested in building new messaging experiences, executives have said. Instagram employees who work on messaging were moved to the Facebook Messenger team earlier this year as part of a broader consolidation between the parent company and its prized acquisition.
A messaging app built around your close friends might be more popular. That’s what Snapchat already is today for a healthy portion of its users. Reports have indicated that the average Snapchat user spends more time inside the app than the average Instagram user does. For Facebook and Instagram, which have long coveted Snapchat’s strong engagement among younger users, Threads could represent another effort to chip away at their rival’s appeal.