Threads, the Instagram-based social media app, is finally getting a long-awaited new feature that’s sure to make it much more inviting to current and new users.
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg confirmed the news on his Instagram broadcast channel: “Threads started rolling out an option for a chronological feed of only people you’re following and added translations too.” This means that you’ll finally have a feed showing posts from people you follow, versus a feed featuring random verified users.
You’ll need to have Threads installed on your phone and update to the latest version, which is version 293 on either Google Play or the App Store, to see the new tab. Once you update, check the app and you’ll see “For You” and “Following.” Click on the latter and now you only see posts from followed accounts.
Threads needs to get a few things right first
Adding a Following feed is one of the best and most important moves that Threads could have made, as users are near guaranteed to use and stay on the app longer if they can actually keep tabs on the people they follow and care about. Not to mention that the closer it gets to Twitter in functionality, the better chance it has to truly compete with and eventually take the place of Twitter.
It doesn’t hurt that Twitter has been constantly rolling out perplexing and terrible updates, making it nigh unusable at times, with the latest being a bizarre and ridiculous renaming of Twitter to simply ‘X.’
While this is one of the most requested features that’s finally gotten implemented, there are still plenty of tools that Threads needs to be properly fleshed out. First, it needs Direct Messages, as there’s no way to privately contact other users on the app. Users will go to other sites for the feature and limit time spent on Threads.
Second, Threads needs a Trending tab, as it allows users to stay informed about the latest news, world events, social issues, and popular discussions. And while this feature can often cause arguments across the Twitter platform, it also vastly increases engagement and site retention, which are right now very much needed for it to survive long-term.
It also needs proper search, as right now you can only look up other accounts and not general topics, making it harder to curate timelines. And finally, Threads badly needs a desktop mode in order to boost its dwindling engagement, as the mobile-only strategy that worked well for Instagram doesn’t seem to be working nearly as well for Threads.