Elon Musk said he was mistaken that Apple “threatened” to suspend Twitter from the App Store, claiming he met with Apple CEO Tim Cook and cleared the air over the issue.
On Wednesday, Musk tweeted, “Thanks @tim_cook for taking me around Apple’s beautiful HQ” in Cupertino, Calif., along with a 4-second video of a pond. A short time later, he followed up with this: “Good conversation. Among other things, we resolved the misunderstanding about Twitter potentially being removed from the App Store. Tim was clear that Apple never considered doing so.”
Apple did not respond to a request for comment.
The about-face in Musk’s tone came two days after he unleashed several tweets attacking the tech giant. “Apple has also threatened to withhold Twitter from its App Store, but won’t tell us why,” he tweeted Monday, along with alleging Apple has “censored” apps and had mostly stopped advertising with Twitter.
It’s unclear whether Musk and Cook discussed what the former termed the App Store’s 30% “tax” on in-app purchases. According to a report by tech news outlet Platformer, the planned Nov. 29 relaunch of Twitter Blue — which was revamped to provide a “verified” blue check-mark badge — was delayed, and when it becomes available again users may not be able to pay using in-app purchases on iOS devices, in order for Twitter to avoid having to pay Apple’s fees.
Meanwhile, Twitter on Wednesday said it will begin “expanding” recommended content to users — in other words, showing tweets from accounts you don’t follow. “We want to ensure everyone on Twitter sees the best content on the platform, so we’re expanding recommendations to all users, including those who may not have seen them in the past,” the Twitter Support team wrote in a tweet.
In addition, Musk tweeted that “Twitter is purging a lot of spam/scam accounts right now, so you may see your follower count drop.” The billionaire had tried to back out of his $44 billion agreement to buy Twitter by, among other things, alleging that the social network failed to provide evidence to back up its claim that spam and fake accounts represented less than 5% of active users.
It’s been 34 days since Musk closed the Twitter acquisition on Oct. 27, and during that time Musk has dramatically shaken up the company. He fired its senior management (and appointed himself CEO), laying off half of its 7,500-member workforce and reportedly prompting another 1,200-plus employees leave over his demands they commit to an “extremely hardcore” work culture. His ill-fated attempt to revamp Twitter Blue with the blue check-mark perk was halted after a wave of accounts impersonating brands and celebrities caused havoc.
Musk also decided to reinstate Donald Trump’s Twitter account, after the ex-president had been suspended over his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, U.S. Capitol attack. And he declared that Twitter will grant “amnesty” to previously suspended accounts (“provided that they have not broken the law or engaged in egregious spam”).