Twitter Blue is relaunching on Monday – here’s what you need to know

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It’s been a somewhat tumultuous time at Twitter since Elon Musk took over at the end of October, and there’s been a lot of focus on the controversial changes to the Twitter Blue subscription plan. Now Twitter has announced the plan is relaunching on Monday.

In a tweet from its official account, Twitter confirmed that the cost of Twitter Blue will remain the same at $8 a month, but go up to $11 a month if you sign up through iOS (with Apple’s App Store tax included). International pricing for the iOS bump has yet to be confirmed, but the plan currently costs £7 a month in the UK and AU$7 in Australia.

One of the most talked about changes coming to Twitter Blue is that verification will be rolled into it. The new announcement says that Blue subscribers with a verified phone number will get a blue tick once their account has been approved, so it sounds like there is some kind of manual checking going on too.

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What you get

Twitter also says that tweets from Blue subscribers will be prioritized in replies, mentions and search. Those who pay the monthly fee will also see fewer ads and be able to post longer videos, as well as gaining early access to new features as they’re testing.

Other Twitter features that are going to be exclusive to Blue subscribers are the ability to edit tweets, to post video at 1080p quality, and to access a reader mode that makes tweets and threads easier to parse on screen.

Meanwhile, the “official” labels that have appeared on some accounts will be changed to gold checkmarks for businesses and gray checkmarks for government and “multilateral” accounts. As yet it’s not clear what will happen to individual users who have previously been verified under the older system.

Analysis: Twitter 2.0 takes off

As the head of SpaceX, Tesla and now Twitter, Elon Musk certainly divides opinion – but there’s no debate that he likes to move fast with his changes and innovations. We’ve seen all kinds of tests and tweaks on Twitter in the past couple of months.

When it comes to Twitter Blue and the verification process, it could be argued that Musk has moved too fast. While Twitter Blue was already available before his arrival, offering a blue tick to subscribers while also hiking up prices for those who sign up through their iPhones or iPads has made it more confusing and more contentious.

Having extra features that cost makes sense – Twitter needs the revenue, after all – but verification was originally supposed to be a way of confirming identity and trustworthiness on Twitter. Now, that can be bought by anyone who is able to afford it, which dilutes the appeal of having that blue checkmark.

We’ll have to wait and see how these changes affect the social network and whether Musk’s grand plan for Twitter 2.0 can become a reality. No doubt there’s plenty more in the pipeline too as the platform continues to evolve.

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