What is X, Elon Musk’s app that could replace Twitter

Billionaire Elon Musk may use Twitter as a starting point to create X, a super app to “dominate” the West. a big trip, as he recently stated on his profile.

Musk’s idea seems to be to turn Twitter into an app similar to WeChat, an extremely popular solution in Asia, especially China. It’s some kind of app. all in onebecause it combines a number of services such as instant messages, social networks, payment services, online shopping and food delivery.

This concept does not yet exist in the West in such a size, but the X could be a pioneer in the segment. In Brazil, it is common to use the nomenclature superapp for services that integrate virtual commerce and payment, but there is still nothing that can come close to WeChat and its centralizing formula.

Will Twitter become X?

In favor of Twitter is its popularity and good social acceptance. The network is far from as populated as Instagram and TikTok, but it enjoys prestige thanks to the fact that it is used by politicians, authorities, companies and digital influencers, especially when they need to express opinions or share thoughts.

With the announcement of the purchase by Musk, who promised to offer more “freedom of speech” by reducing content moderation, there was much talk of a possible mass exodus from the platform to rivals like Mastodon. Integrating new services into Twitter could be a smart way to keep people more connected, in addition to bringing more profits to the business.

X could attract a new audience, less interested in short notices but willing to shop online or make payments without relying on banks. WhatsApp has been trying to follow this line for a few years now, mostly since the launch of WhatsApp Pay, but it still continues to slide without these additions becoming popular.

It is not yet known whether the entrepreneur will realize his plans, but it seems that it is only a matter of time. This is an old project of the owner of SpaceX, who even thought about starting his own social network on X if the Twitter purchase goes bad.

What to expect from X?

Integrating a social network with a shopping app is the dream of all developers in the field. You’re watching a video of your favorite content creator when you come across delicious food that they’ve made, but which can be delivered to your home with just one click.

It would be much simpler than going to the supermarket, getting groceries and preparing a meal. Many people even lose the will to think about this long process. This is the trump card that a super app like X can offer: abusing people’s buying impulses to sell more and make money like never before.

In Asia, WeChat’s main rival is Grab. It doesn’t offer a social network, but it has everything people want: door-step taxis, food delivery, grocery shopping orders, shopping packages, and payments of all kinds.

Photo: Reproduction / NBC News / Canaltech

In the case of Grab, people can order a meal at dawn or order peeled jackfruit from the nearest grocery store, saving themselves the work (and bad smell) of preparing it for consumption. The super app also lets you send orders or documents, shop on thousands of e-commerce websites or request a covid-19 test, for example.

Everything is paid with a digital wallet linked to a bank account or credit card. Some solutions offer direct payment in installments with the company (something Brazilians know well, but less common abroad) and a reward system with discounts/coins earned for performing in-app activities.

When it comes to Elon Musk, it is clear that an integrated payment system should be one of the core features of X, including support for cryptocurrencies. This would apparently require the launch of a massive blockchain platform, something that has been in the billionaire’s plans for quite some time.

Will Musk’s Superapp come to Brazil?

It is still too early to talk about the expansion to Brazil and other countries because X has never been officially confirmed. The idea is good, and having Twitter as a starting point – the social network already has an integrated payment system from Stripes – can speed up the plans of the billionaire owner of Tesla.

WeChat has 1.29 billion users in China, so it would be difficult to compete in the eastern fields. But Musk has the entire West, especially Europe and North America, to implement X.

This would give the popular entrepreneur a level of power rarely seen in the history of technology. Super apps can keep people connected almost all day, which translates into advertising sales, content reach and dominance in multiple markets at the same time.

Despite the convenience, it’s important to consider whether people want to centralize their entire lives in one app. All sci-fi apocalyptic movies have big corporations as the trigger for global problems.

Access to credit or basic services would be linked to their “social behaviour”, as depicted in shows like Black Mirror. Such association can have serious consequences for the poorest and digitally excluded, as is the case with WeChat from 2020 offering additional benefits to those with good financial standing.

Will Musk’s super-app X, if ever released, be considered revolutionary or a threat to free speech? Only time and the attitude taken by the X developers will tell.

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