A thing that concerns me about Elon Musk’s vision for X is that he doesn’t seem entirely realistic about the platform’s current state, which doesn’t bode well for its future development.
Well, that’s one concern of many, I guess. But take, for example, this new update to X’s game streaming display.
X has today announced that you can now view the related stream chat on the same screen as the playback in the desktop version of the app. Which is fine, it makes sense, etc.
But it looks pretty lame, right? Like, it’s a far lesser version of how streaming + chat is presented on, say, YouTube or Twitch.
Which makes sense, X is only starting out on this front, and as such, it’s a basic setup to begin with, which will evolve over time. I get that, but in a recent staff all-hands meeting, this statement from Elon raised some eyebrows.
“We’re rapidly reaching parity with YouTube and may exceed them.”
Again, X is only starting out with more advanced video features, and it’s not even close to reaching any kind of parity with YouTube’s offering, which it shouldn’t be at this stage. But the fact that Elon even thinks that X could soon exceed the online video giant is a concern, right? Like, his perception here is not close to reality.
Which seems to be a running theme for Elon, in that his optimism, and/or idealism, tends to get ahead of him. He’s been promising self-driving cars for years, he vowed to have humans land on Mars by 2026, while he’s also talking about Neuralink implants that will solve many common impairments.
None of these things are close, and yet, Elon continues to talk about them like they’re a sure thing, and inevitability that will happen within his perceived, original timelines.
Of course, there are many other factors that play into each, and it’s not to say that Musk is entirely to blame for failing to achieve these ambitious targets. But in terms of X, it does suggest that you should probably take his proclamations with a grain of salt. Because even if X can create a full payments system, or an improved streaming service, or whatever else it is that they’re working on, they likely won’t be that great.
Elon seems to believe that minimum viable product is enough to compete, and for some reason, he seems convinced that by X simply providing the capacity to post jobs, or find a date, that will get people flocking.
But basic functionality is not going to do it. Which is the same in this instance. While it’s interesting that X has added a stream chat display, I don’t see why any streamers would make the switch.
Maybe it’ll all come together, and Elon will have the last laugh. But there does seem to be some perceptual gaps that point to flaws in his approach.