Twitter has finally released the pricing details for its new subscription API packages, and it’s not cheap. The platform’s free API access is soon to be cut off, and those looking at enterprise API access will pay millions of dollars per year. The move has not gone smoothly, with critics slamming the decision to kill free API access.

What are the details of Twitter’s new API plan, and why has the move been so controversial?

Twitter New API plan

Tweet by Chris Stokel



The New API Plan

Twitter’s new API plan offers three subscription tiers. The lowest subscription tier costs $42,000 per month for access to 50 million tweets. The mid-tier plan provides access to 100 million tweets and costs $125,000 per month, while the highest plan, offering 200 million tweets, costs $210,000 per month.

What’s particularly striking about Twitter’s pricing model is that instead of higher tiers being offered at a discount for customers who pay more, the pricing model actually charges extra. For example, 100 million tweets should cost $84,000 for double the tweets, but Twitter is charging $125,000.

Criticism of the Move

The move to kill free API access has been widely criticized, particularly by researchers who make up a significant portion of Twitter’s API user base. Many academics have pointed out that the pricing puts utilizing Twitter’s API out of their reach financially. The delay in implementing the new API rules has also caused frustration. The date that free access was supposed to shut off came and went without any changes. Twitter then announced the new API rules would come into force on February 13, but instead, the company just announced another delay.

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Elon Musk’s Role

Elon Musk’s decision to kill free API access was roundly criticized when first announced. Many popular free Twitter bots and automated accounts planned to shut down rather than pay. In response, Musk altered his plans and said Twitter would provide free “read-only” access with lower API limits to free projects. While not official, Musk has also floated the idea of charging around $100 per month for more basic API access for small projects and startups that are monetized by their creators.



Twitter’s new API plan will undoubtedly have a significant impact on those who rely on the platform’s API for research and development. The high pricing has been met with criticism, and it remains to be seen whether Musk’s proposed solutions will be enough to appease disgruntled users. One thing is for sure, though – accessing Twitter’s town square and its speech will now come at a significant cost.



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