Threads isn’t dead and it now has polls and GIFs too

Anton Ioffe - October 26th 2023 - 5 minutes read

In the dynamic realm of social media, longevity and relevance remain key determinants of a platform's success. Navigating this landscape and re-inventing itself is the story of Threads, the once ostracised application that is now gaining momentum with its quirky, user-friendly features such as polls and GIFs. How has this shift transpired and what does it signify for Threads' future? This article will take you down the memory lane of Threads' evolution, offer a deep analysis of user interactions, and pit the platform against social media giants. Join us as we unravel the intricacies of Threads' revival, its standing in the saturated social media world, and the potential challenges waiting on the horizon.

The Evolution and Revival of Threads: A Deep-Dive Analysis

Threads - Meta's answer to Twitter - has been courageously clawing its way back into the thriving social media ecosystem, despite experiencing a considerable lapse in user engagement initially. This dip was principally attributed to the platform's lack of features essential for content exploration, rendering it far less vibrant and interactive than counterparts like TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter. However, the application took prompt notice of the omissions undermining its potential.

Recognizing the enormous value of interactive features like GIFs and polls, Threads introduced them to their platform. This strategic move breathed new life into the application, transforming the user interface into an engaging and dynamic space. The functionality of Threads began to transition from a preemptive version of Twitter to a social media platform that started to carve out its own unique identity.

Threads' journey signifies much more than just a product revamp. It showcases a remarkable illustration of a company's resilience and dedication to promote an enhanced user experience. By proactively acknowledging and rectifying their mistakes, Threads offered a much-awaited revival and infused a richer dimension into the platform with the addition of GIFs and polls. With its renewed functionality, Threads managed to create a more welcoming and appealing space for its users, demonstrating a commendable stride towards growth and improvement in the digital sphere. While the social media landscape continues to evolve at a rapid pace, Threads' user-centric adaptations affirm that survival rests on accurately responding to user needs and emerging trends. As Threads embarks on this journey of evolution, it is exciting to anticipate what the future holds for this adaptable platform.

User Interactions and the Future of Threads: Harnessing Opportunities and Overcoming Challenges

Threads, despite its initial stumbles, is experiencing a revival with a steady growth in user engagement on the heels of new features such as polls and GIFs. While primarily dominated by users migrating from Instagram in its early phase, Threads’ user demographic is gradually diversifying. This is an interesting development, particularly when considering how the unique user behaviors and content preferences of these divergent groups will shape the platform's future growth and trajectory. But, is this enough to steer Threads towards its ambitious goal of surpassing the massive user base of Twitter?

One of the critical factors underpinning Threads’ success will be its ability to harbor cultural conversations and instant interactions - an area where it currently lags behind. The lack of functionalities like clickable hashtags and a content search feature prevents users from immersing themselves in real-time cultural exchanges and trend discussions. This makes Threads feel slower and more sterile in comparison to its competitors. So, just like it addressed its initial gaps, proven by its moves such as introducing GIFs and polls, the platform would need to bring about more such features that enhance real-time user interactions.

At the same time, under the umbrella of Meta, Threads is benefitting from the parent company's resources and vast user base, enabling it to carry out a global roll-out, a feat remarkable for a social media app still in its infancy. But, the critical challenge lies in distinguishing itself from Instagram, on which it heavily depends. To really hold its ground against the more seasoned competitors, Threads must carve a niche for itself and nurture a platform-specific user culture. Otherwise, the shadow of Instagram and other established social media giants may loom large over its progress. In fact, Meta's move of linking Threads with Instagram could be a double-edged sword - while it has helped ramp up the user base, it may also stifle the platform's ability to find its unique identity and ethos.

Targeting Twitter-level user numbers is a daring target for Threads, and to stand a real chance, the platform will need to consistently innovate to enhance user interactions, create a distinct identity, and channel its momentum effectively. After all, it's not just about the number of users but about how engaged and invested they are in the platform. Only time can tell if Threads will emerge victorious in this high-stakes game of influence in the social media domain.

Threads vs. The Giants: Positioning in the Social Media Landscape

Threads, a newcomer in the social media landscape, faces the inevitable comparison with the industry titans, Instagram and Twitter. One of the main challenges that Threads needs to overcome is its striking resemblance to Instagram. Being linked to Instagram was somewhat a double-edged sword for Threads. On one hand, it led to a meteoric rise in the user base, reaching 100 million users in just five days. On the other hand, this has resulted in Threads inheriting a culture and style that mirrors Instagram closely. This could potentially deter Twitter-centric audiences who are on the lookout for a fresh platform.

Another crucial aspect placing Threads under scrutiny is user engagement, or the seeming scarcity thereof. Unlike Twitter, Threads appears to lack the immediate, real-time nature of engagement. A vast majority of Twitter users resort to the platform to initiate or partake in live cultural conversations, which, unfortunately, do not seem to translate well into Threads due to its slower, more sterile environment.

On the features front, Threads, despite being an excellent initial offering, is missing some key functions that its counterparts boast, such as content search, hashtags, following feeds, direct messaging, analytics, polls, and a GIF keyboard. This, again, stunts the flow of user engagement on the platform significantly. In a highly competitive social media ecosystem, the introduction of a new platform necessitates filling a void or offering a superior user experience, a mission that Threads appears to be struggling with. However, the app's dynamic growth and the power of its parent company Meta, cannot be underestimated, hinting at a promising road to success and maturity.


In a bid to regain relevance, social media platform Threads has undergone a significant transformation, introducing new features such as polls and GIFs that have breathed new life into the platform. Despite initial challenges and comparisons to industry giants like Instagram and Twitter, Threads is showing promising signs of growth and diversifying its user base. However, the platform still faces challenges in terms of fostering real-time interactions, creating a distinct user culture, and distinguishing itself from Instagram. The future success of Threads will rely on its ability to innovate and enhance user engagement while navigating the competitive social media landscape.

Don't Get Left Behind:
The Top 5 Career-Ending Mistakes Software Developers Make
FREE Cheat Sheet for Software Developers