Elon Musk is convinced that Twitter’s Android app is very slow in countries like India and Indonesia, and he’s determined to fix the problem. The billionaire’s comments about Twitter’s performance on Android have also sparked controversy. He’s been called multiple times over the past week by Twitter employees, including some of the Android app engineers, who said Musk’s assessment was correct. But Musk is in no mood to take criticism and has fired engineers who challenged him on the platform. Another report from the platformer says even those who joked about their new boss in official chats on Slack were fired.
Regarding the Android app, Musk tweeted that the platform is not performing at the level it should in many regions of the world. He said that in regions like India and Indonesia, Twitter is much slower than the app in the US. “Twitter refreshes in about 2 seconds in the US compared to India where it can take about 10-20 seconds,” he wrote.
The new Twitter CEO says this could be due to “poor batching/verbose communication”.
Twitter is very slow in India, Indonesia and many other countries. This is fact, not “claim”.
10 to 15 seconds to update homeline tweets is common. Sometimes it doesn’t work at all, especially on Android phones.
The only question is how much lag is due to bandwidth/latency/app.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 15, 2022
“There are ~1200 server-side ‘microservices’, of which ~40 are critical to the functioning of Twitter, according to the Server Control team,” Musk added in a later tweet, replying to former Meta-CTO Mike Schroepfer (@schrep ). He also wrote that the app was slow even on the latest iPhone in India and many other countries.
Schroepfer had previously questioned Musk’s claim of “1200 RPCs” as the main culprit for Twitter’s slowdown in many countries. For the uninitiated, an RPC (Remote Procedure Call) is a software communications protocol that allows apps like Twitter to request services from another computer over a connected network.
“Reducing that 1200 number, reducing data usage, serializing trips, and simplifying the app are all needed to improve usage speeds,” Musk adds. In another tweet, Musk also hinted that there are parts of the world where an update on Twitter could take up to 30 seconds.
Android developer for 10 years, this is more due to a lack of edge caching, CDN and service availability in the region than anything to do with the app itself. Generally, if you are using the same app in 2 regions and one of them is slow, it has nothing to do with the client
— Matt Platoff (@matt_platoff) November 14, 2022
Several Android developers and programmers outside of Twitter have also contradicted Musk’s claims, pointing out that other factors like “edge caching” and “service availability” could affect the speed of apps like Twitter in regions like India. Meanwhile, it looks like Musk has doubled down on criticism of firing employees who have questioned him. In response to a tweet, he continued, “I want to apologize for firing these geniuses. Her immense talent will no doubt be of great use elsewhere.”