Twitter is taking a page out of WhatsApp and Facebook’s books by bringing new features to its platform. On Wednesday, Twitter chief Elon Musk announced that the micro-blogging site will soon sport calls and encrypted messaging on its platform. In a tweet on Wednesday, the billionaire announced that users can direct message reply to any message in the thread, as well as reply with any emoji reactions. Additionally, support for voice and video chats is coming to its platform – something that will allow users to communicate with others across the globe, and without having to reveal their phone numbers.
The addition of end-to-end encrypted messaging on Twitter will also bring it in line with other messaging platforms like WhatsApp and Signal, which have already implemented similar features. This will provide users with more security and privacy when communicating with others on the platform. The release of the first version of the encrypted direct messages (DMs) is set to happen tomorrow – Thursday, May 11 – according to Musk, who added that it would “grow in sophistication rapidly.” The arrival of encrypted messaging to the platform is long overdue – it is already present on other platforms like Meta’s WhatsApp, Facebook, and Instagram.
With latest version of app, you can DM reply to any message in the thread (not just most recent) and use any emoji reaction.
Release of encrypted DMs V1.0 should happen tomorrow. This will grow in sophistication rapidly. The acid test is that I could not see your DMs even if…
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 9, 2023
The feature is also something that Musk had said would come to Twitter 2.0 – The Everyday App – after he acquired the social media company for $44 billion last year. At that time, some of the other features he said would come to Twitter included long-form tweets. Support for video and voice chants will be arriving to Twitter “soon,” Musk noted.
However, Musk did not elaborate on whether the calls on Twitter would be encrypted as well. With the integration of these features, Twitter will be able to offer a more comprehensive messaging service to its users, making it a more viable alternative to popular messaging apps like WhatsApp and Signal. By allowing encrypted messaging, Twitter will provide a more secure platform for its users to communicate, potentially drawing in users who are concerned about data privacy and security. Musk assured users that he will not be able to view their DMs, “even if there was a gun” to his head.
The addition of voice calls will also make the platform more versatile, allowing users to have voice conversations with friends and colleagues directly on the app. This move by Twitter is seen as a positive step towards expanding its user base and keeping up with its rivals in the messaging app space. The ability to offer more comprehensive services will help to attract and retain users, potentially leading to increased engagement and revenue for the platform. All of these are things that Twitter desperately needs, while it operates with a diminished workforce and its bid to transform Twitter Blue into a new stream of revenue has only led to more chaos and criticism.