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Bluesky, Jack Dorsey’s Twitter alternative, debuts on App Store

Twitter co-founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey’s Bluesky, announced as an alternative to the microblogging site, has debuted on Apple’s App Store during its testing phase.

TechCrunch reported that access to the app is currently restricted as it is still available as an invite-only beta. However, its public launch could be next in the pipeline. The Bluesky team had shared updates of the Twitter ‘substitute’ in its October 2022 blog. According to app intelligence firm, Bluesky has been downloaded at least 2,000 times since it was launched in the iOS store on February 17.

With a simple user interface, users can create 256 character posts, including photos, by clicking a plus button. While Twitter asks ‘what’s happening?’ Bluesky is more about ‘what’s up?’ The option to share, mute, and block accounts is also currently working, as per the report.

A discover tab features in the bottom centre of the app’s navigation that gives suggestions to follow people and updates on the feed. The tab for notifications will let users know about any new likes, replies, reposts and more. Users can follow other users, however, there is no facility to directly message people on the app as of now. User profiles show a profile picture, background, bio and metrics, the report stated.

The Bluesky project had its origins from within Twitter in 2019 when Dorsey was still its CEO. It had also received financial support from Twitter.

Also read: Twitter sacks at least 200 employees in latest round of layoffs: Report

$13 million in funding was pumped into Bluesky’s research and development last year with Dorsey on its board.

Shortly after his exit from the CEO position atTwitter in 2021, Dorsey called Bluesky ‘an open decentralized standard for social media’. The app will reduce the power of platforms like Twitter in content moderation and control of user data, he said.

Bluesky was set up to research and develop technologies that encourage open and decentralised public conversation.

“It’s rare for a project to be set up like this. We’re using our freedom to focus on building, and will work towards our vision of a durable protocol for public conversation no matter what happens,” said the company.

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