Truth Social, the app developed by former president Donald Trump’s new media company, became available for download in Apple’s App Store over the weekend ahead of an anticipated launch Monday.
Twitter banned Trump last year from the social media platform, citing the “risk of further incitement of violence,” following the Jan. 6 insurrection repeatedly encouraged by the former president.
Numerous user accounts had emerged by Monday and reported delays or errors setting up the account. A Washington Post reporter early Monday was able to download the app and submit an email address to create an account, but a verification email was not immediately received.
Reuters reported that the app was set to be released in full on Monday, Presidents’ Day, according to an executive’s posts on a beta version of the platform.
The Post reported in January that it could be months after launch before the app is fully functional. Trump has been frustrated with the pace of the network’s development, people familiar with the matter told The Post at the time.
Trump announced the development of the network in October, saying, “We live in a world where the Taliban has a huge presence on Twitter, yet your favorite American President has been silenced.” He added, “This is unacceptable.”
Following the insurrection by a pro-Trump mob at the U.S. Capitol last year, Facebook and Twitter booted Trump from their platforms. He and other conservative politicians have long charged that popular social networks were trying to censor them.
After Trump’s new network was announced in October, a version of the site briefly became accessible to the public, allowing people to create accounts and claim usernames. One account under the handle “donaldjtrump” posted a photo of a pig defecating.
A representative for Trump Media & Technology Group, the company behind Truth Social, did not immediately respond to a request for comment regarding the timing of the app’s official launch.
Truth Social was listed in the top charts for downloads on the App Store on Monday morning, ahead of HBO Max and TikTok.
Users signing up to Truth Social are greeted by a sign-up email that describes the platform’s clientele as “Truth Sayers." “Share your unique opinion by posting a Truth, Re-Truth, photo, news story, or video link … Don’t be shocked if they take your Truth viral!" a welcome message states.
The most recent news release on the firm’s website is a statement from Trump — in the style of his old tweets — about the “Freedom Convoy” protests against pandemic restrictions in Canada and elsewhere. He opined in the Feb. 4 statement that tech firms were targeting the protesters and that “TruthSocial is announcing today that we are welcoming the Freedom Convoy with open arms to communicate freely on TruthSocial when we launch — coming very soon!”
Purported screenshots of the Truth Social beta site show a platform similar to Twitter’s, including “Truths” and “Likes,” instead of tweets and likes.
After he lost his online platform in the spring, Trump launched a blog called “From the Desk of Donald Trump.” But as The Post and others reported, the site had low readership.
The blog shuttered after 29 days amid reports that Trump was upset by media coverage about its small audience.