Twitter Blue subscriptions cost AUD 4.49 or CAD 3.49 monthly and are currently available to iOS only.

Twitter Inc (NYSE: TWTR) rolled out Twitter Blue, its first paid subscription service on Thursday. Twitter Blue is initially available in Canada and Australia only. The new service gives users access to tools superior to those of unpaid Twitter accounts. These include a 30-second undo button for tweets that enables retraction of tweets before they go live. A Bookmark Folder allows easier organization and access to saved tweets. The Reader Mode makes Twitter feed less crowded and more distinct for easier content digestion in comparison to long threads of Tweets.

Twitter stock hasn’t reacted to the news with impressive growth. On Thursday, it closed at $57.01 (-0.26%) and now in the pre-market, it is just 0.16% up.

Additionally, Twitter Blue offers ‘dedicated customer subscription support’ for prompt resolution of consumer account or subscription issues. However, abuse and harassment reports will undergo the normal channels that unpaid Twitter accounts use.

The smaller perks of the service are purely esthetical for customization of Twitter background themes and Twitter App icon colors on mobile home screens. Twitter Blue subscriptions cost $4.49 AUD or $3.49 CAD monthly and are currently available to iOS only.

Twitter said the Twitter Blue debut is being done in the two select countries in order to obtain information useful for making the Twitter Blue experience more expressive and customized. This would also start discussions on pricing in addition to features the company should prioritize for future iterations of the service. The company, however, did not give a specific time as to when the premium tools will have global access.

Twitter Blue among Innovative Aspects Rolled Out

With increasing competition from its rivals Facebook and Snapchat, Twitter had to find an alternative source of revenue, seeing as they relied heavily on advertising revenue. Pressure also came from activist investors.

Twitter Blue was among the innovative aspects developed. Its features incorporated some of the ideas, comments and complaints raised by avid Twitterers.

Other features that will ultimately change Twitter’s business model include the Tip Jar and the Super Follows feature. The former began being tested in early May and its purpose is to allow users to tip or give their favorite accounts a one-off payment.

The Super Follows feature was announced in February and will allow users to charge subscriptions for community groups, bonus tweets and newsletters. Writers on Twitter can now publish newsletters after the company acquired Revue email service. The company, however, has not announced when it plans to roll out the Super Follows feature.

Another Twitter development, Scroll, will make articles easier to read by removing clutter such as ads.

From the new initiatives, Twitter anticipates at least a doubling in its revenue, from $3.7 billion last year to $7.5 billion by 2023.

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Steve Muchoki

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