In a twist that rocked the social media world, Elon Musk transformed Twitter's famous blue bird into a mysterious "X." But it's not just a logo change. It's not a single character, moreover "contested" with Google's X Company, with Microsoft (which registered the X for XBox) and... with a lot of things. Behind it hides a bold vision of the future of digital communication. A communication that concentrates a thousand functions in a sort of 'universal' app.
While everyone wonders what this change means, and once again they are divided between haters and fanboys of the richest man on the planet, one thing is certain: with Musk at the helm, Twitter, or rather "X", is bound to surprise us in ways we can't yet imagine.
The Rise of "X": Beyond Social Media
When we think of social media, posts, tweets (adieu), likes and shares come to mind. Elon Musk just gave all of this a shot. With the introduction of "X", Twitter is no longer just a place to share thoughts in at least 280 characters (actually many more... for a fee). It is an evolving ecosystem, poised to become a universal hub for ideas, goods and services. An app for everything, all-in-one, on the Chinese model WeChat, from Indiana Pay™ and Indonesian GoJek.
These platforms allow users to do more than just post: they can send and receive payments, stream content, listen to music, and even book taxis or order food. A dot of Musk from before he even acquired Twitter, when we thought wanted to build from scratch its infrastructure.
With "X", Musk wants to bring these features to a global audience. And for the umpteenth time he could create a race to emulate.
Linda Yaccarino, the new Twitter CEO, outlined the vision of "X" as the "future state of unlimited interactivity". Imagine a world where you can interact with audio, video, messages and even banking services, all in one platform. In summary: Netflix, Instagram, Tiktok, Paypal, Spotify, Uber e Deliveroo put together. And with artificial intelligence to support it.
It may sound crazy, but we're talking about a guy who talks about building cities on Mars. And that earlier this month he obtained money transfer licenses in three US states, just to reiterate that he didn't wake up yesterday with "Zum zum" in his head.
But… Why "X"?
This is also an old cue from Musk. The x.com domain (which now points to the "former Twitter") has been available to the American tycoon since 2000, when he was concentrated on Paypal. 17 years later, always to the sound of money, bought it right from Paypal. And think that X is also the first letter of X Æ A-12, the unpronounceable name of his son. That "closes" the name of his aerospace company, SpaceX. And it is the name of the third Tesla model, year 2015.
In short, you will understand that the 'universal', before an app, seems to be the fixation. And fixations don't always end well.
Yes, some 'super apps' have been successful: however, many industry experts wonder if a similar concept could work in the West. In other words: after buying it, Musk launches the bird into the unknown. Or does he make it fall into the void?
If there's one thing Musk's career has taught us, it's never to underestimate him. Is he a genius? Is he crazy?
Maybe both. Which strengthens the thesis.