No one knows the mystery behind the obsession of Elon Musk with the letter ‘X’. It all started with one of the world’s richest men and news-grabbing billionaire starting one of his initial ventures X.com. It was an online bank that offered payment gateways and financial services to people around the United States. Although people criticized the name for being very shady and non-friendly, Musk stuck with it. Later, it was merged with Confinity to form PayPal in 2000 which was well-received and became a global company. Musk then moved to open his space exploration company ‘SpaceX’ to reduce transportation costs to space. In 2008, he took over the electric car company ‘Tesla’ and introduced a model named X.
If you think that was enough to show his obsession with X, you need to think again. Elon recently took the drastic step of rebranding the social platform Twitter. Musk purchased the domain X.com from PayPal in 2017 and renamed Twitter to ‘X’ this week. This shows that Elon had a long-standing dream and vision to create the ‘X’ universe. For this, Musk has created a parent company ‘X Holdings Corp’. that would include Twitter, or you can say, X. Musk has rebranded Twitter to X risking its 17-year legacy and saying goodbye to all the birds. The logo – Larry the Bird – has also been discarded and replaced with a white X on a black background.
The Everything App
With X, Musk aims to create ‘the everything app’ like WeChat in China, GoJek in Indonesia and Grab in Singapore. Basically, it will cover everything from news, e-commerce, instant text messaging, video/audio calling, payments/finances, cryptocurrencies etc. to offer comprehensive services. Musk has been saying for the past few years that such apps are already dominating the Asian market. However, no such app catered to the Western or European market and Musk aims to fill this gap. With such custom mobile applications entering into the market can be a game changer. However, critics have already started to criticize the approach taken by Musk. It is showcased through the 50% revenues plummeted over the past few months. Nevertheless, Musk is a man of strong vision and will not deter until he achieves his goal.
What We Know
The vision of an ‘everything app’ is a realistic one and it sure will fulfill the gap in the market. The application will be powered by Musk’s own company xAI and will be revolutionary. The app has been criticized for its operations and questioned whether it will work outside Asia or not. When WeChat was introduced in China by Tencent. it had no banks, no source of entertainment, and no specific mobile application for instant messaging or audio-video calls. WeChat captured the market significantly and dominated that now no application can even compete with it. Similar is the case with Grab and GoJek. The case with US and European markets is different. They have tons of mobile applications for different purposes and Americans are used to it.
Be it Amazon, PayPal, YouTube, Netflix, WhatsApp, Instagram etc. If Musk introduces the new X ‘everything app’, no one knows what reaction would it create. Interestingly, Google and Amazon are more capable of creating such an app as they own the entire platform and can integrate many functions into one mobile application. X is a standalone company and making something like an ‘everything app’ would require significant costs, infrastructure and labor. Although Musk can finance capital through various sources, no one would not if it would become another sunk cost. Musk considers the $44 billion he invested to purchase Twitter as a sunk cost. But it would be the ultimate addition to his vision of building ‘the everything app’. Musk himself has stated that ‘adding Twitter will accelerate X by 3 to 5 years or maybe not’.
Only time will tell if the decision to create the ‘everything app’ by the world’s richest man will withstand the test of time and become a success. However for those, who know the visionary nature of Elon Musk. He is bound to achieve greatness. It will become successful as time goes by and if someone can make it work, it is Musk. The ‘everything app’ like WeChat will fill a significant gap in the market enabling users to do everything on a single app. This will eliminate the need to install several different kinds of apps for various purposes. Twitter’s rebranding to X is a major decision and Musk stated that it accelerates X by 3 to 5 years. People have criticized Musk for his untimely and strange decisions since taking over Twitter in October 2022. However, Musk is envisioning something great with a custom application or ‘everything app’.
Let’s see whether his strategic decisions that have upset most people will pay off or not. Musk has said to revolutionize the world by leveraging technology to every platform it works with. With so much to do, it will definitely take a lot of time to make and operate. But it’s Elon Musk we are talking about who goes against the odds to shake the world with one move.