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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 26 February 2021

Fleets are coming: Twitter to roll out 'disappearing tweets' function

The new function will allow for tweets to only stick around for 24 hours

Twitter will soon be rolling out Fleets, a function that only displays tweets for 24 hours before they disappear. AFP
Twitter will soon be rolling out Fleets, a function that only displays tweets for 24 hours before they disappear. AFP

Instagram has Instastories, Facebook has its own Story function, and now Twitter is all set to join the game with the launch of Fleets – temporary or fleeting tweets that will disappear 24 hours after being posted.

On Tuesday, the social media platform announced that it will be rolling out the new function globally in the coming days.

How to use Fleets on Twitter

People will be able to Fleet tweets, photos or videos and customise their Fleets with various backgrounds and text options. To share a tweet in a Fleet, they can tap the “Share” icon at the bottom of the tweet and then tap, “Share in Fleet.” Text or emojis can also be added to it. Soon, stickers and live broadcasting will be available in Fleets as well.

What is the purpose of the new Fleet function?

The purpose of the new function, according to Twitter, is to encourage people to join in on global conversation. The platform discovered that many of its users were uncomfortable with sharing tweets as they felt they were too permanent. However, because Fleets disappear after a day, people are more comfortable sharing personal and casual thoughts, opinions and feelings through them.

Users in Brazil will see rounded profile icons above their timeline on Twitter’s mobile app. The first icon is a ‘+’-adorned thought bubble with the user’s own profile picture. To compose a Fleet, users will simply have to tap the thought bubble. Kayvon Beykpour / Twitter
The Fleets function mimics that of Instagram stories. Kayvon Beykpour / Twitter

The company tested out the new function in Brazil, Italy, India and South Korea, and learned that Fleets made people feel more comfortable about posting.

The design element looks very similar to that of Instagram stories. Followers will be able to see Fleets at the top of their timeline. Anyone who can see a full profile can see the account’s Fleets there too. If an account has open direct messages, anyone can reply to its Fleets.

When someone wants to reply to a Fleet, they can tap on it to send a direct message or emoji to the author, and continue the conversation in their direct messages.

The company has also announced that the feature will be evolving, according to people’s feedback. The exact date of launch in the UAE is yet to be announced but according to Twitter, it will be rolled out globally on iOS and Android in the coming days.

Updated: November 18, 2020 01:11 PM

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