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Google and Apple could shrink Twitter Blue’s revenue potential

The news: Twitter CEO Elon Musk’s plan to save the social media company with new revenue streams faces headwinds from Google and Apple.

  • The initial rollout of the $7.99 per month Twitter Blue subscription service was derailed, but the social media company has scheduled a relaunch for November 29.
  • With a majority of Twitter users accessing the platform via iPhones and Android devices, Apple’s 30% commission and Google’s 15% cut are poised to affect Twitter’s revenue potential.
  • If 1% of Twitter’s estimated 250 million daily users paid for Twitter Blue through iOS or Android, it would generate $72 million per year for Apple and $36 million for Google, per Bloomberg.

The fraught context: The relatively modest revenue gains for Apple and Google could equate to devastating losses for Twitter.

  • That’s because Musk’s purchase of the company has saddled it with $13 billion in debt.
  • Even if Twitter successfully circumvented the commissions without fallout, the rise of hate speech and misinformation could put Twitter at odds with Apple’s and Google’s content moderation policies.

Bigger problems: Apple and Google’s gatekeeper status could be a roadblock for Twitter’s financial solvency, but that pales in comparison to other issues.

  • Similar to the rise of Mastodon earlier this month, Hive Social is getting an influx of signups as a Twitter alternative and is the #4 trending topic in the US.
  • Even more worrisome for the company is that amid mass resignations following layoffs of half of Twitter’s employees, Musk is considering further job cuts.
  • The disemboweling of Twitter’s workforce is the biggest threat to successful and secure launches of revenue-generating products.
  • Digital companies’ skilled talent are their greatest assets, and if Twitter can’t rehire or quickly replace and train the people it’s lost, we can expect to see a continued downward spiral.