29th November 2023 9:33 pm
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X’s Premium+ asks for more money to remove timeline ads and not much else

  • X now features a Basic and Premium+ subscription tier.
  • Basic gives access to so-called essential features but locks things like ad revenue share behind higher subscription fees.
  • While Premium+ removes Timeline advertising and boosts replies, there isn’t all that much in terms of additional value above regular Premium.

With rumours of its demise swirling like a maelstrom, X (formerly Twitter), launched two new Premium tiers at the weekend seemingly in a bid to get more users lining X’s pockets.

Those two tiers are Basic and Premium+ which bookend the original Premium subscription. Basic costs R54.37 per month and gives users access to “the most essential Premium features” including:

  • Edit posts,
  • Longer posts,
  • Undo post,
  • Post longer videos,
  • Top articles,
  • Reader,
  • Background video playback,
  • Download videos,
  • Small reply boost,
  • SMS two-factor authentication,
  • Encrypted messages,
  • App icons,
  • Bookmark folders,
  • Custom navigation,
  • Theme,
  • Highlights tab,
  • Hide your likes, and
  • Hide your subscriptions.

This is, fine but we’re really not sure who this tier is for – aside from X of course. Content creators won’t earn advertising revenue share from this subscription so longer posts and videos feels like a “Eh, we need to give em something” sort of move.

Premium+ sports all the perks of Premium but also no ads in the For You and Following timelines. Reading between the lines, you are still likely to see advertising in replies. It’s important to remember that X’s ad revenue share is based on ads seen by Premium subscribers in replies. As such, we doubt X will remove advertising from that space.

In addition, Premium+ subscribers will receive a larger reply boost and that’s it really.

For those two extra perks you will be paying R289.98 per month, double the price of the original Premium which you can still purchase for R144.99 per month.

To sum up then we have X Basic at R54.37, X Premium at R144.99 and X Premium+ at R289.98 per month. There isn’t any more news about the $1 that X began charging new users in New Zealand and the Philippines.

While X was introducing these new subscription tiers, reports surfaced that highlighted just how bad things have become from a financial point of view.

One of the banks that helped Elon Musk finance the deal to take Twitter private reported that the firm was valued at $16.9 billion as of 31st August. While Axios reports that Fidelity, the bank in question, said this was an improvement, it’s a sharp decline from the $20 billion Musk said the platform was worth in March. In fairness, Fidelity doesn’t have inside information nor a full picture of X’s finances, that $16.9 billion is based on its valuation and Musk leveraged multiple entities to finance the acquisition.

Whether these new subscription tiers will bolster X’s bottom line remains to be seen. It’s also not clear if X will introduce similar tiers for organisations but we wouldn’t count on that happening. At least not yet.

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Beats include cybersecurity, business, infrastructure, telecommunications, PC gaming and internet culture.

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