The End Is Near: 4 Twitter For iPhone Features That May Cause Tweet Extinction

Filed as News on April 30, 2010 9:40 pm

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Whether you love them or hate them, Twitter’s recent moves to acquire Tweetie will probably force many twitter developers to either exit the twitterverse or reduce the price of their apps to zero.

While a few tweet apps may survive tweetageddon, most will simply fade away into obscurity–unless they can match or exceed features launching upon the official Twitter app (formally known as Tweetie).

Although Twitter has yet to reveal their iPlans to the world, here are 4 possible features that may debut on the upcoming Twitter app (which may make a few developers nervous).

Peaceful Push Notifications

Even though apps like Echofon and SimplyTweet have boasted push notifications for quite some time, we may see Twitter up the ante by providing selective push notifications based on user preferences.

Instead of sending an alert whenever someone mentions your name, Twitter could enable users to only receive alerts from certain people, lists or even searches.

This would enable power tweeters with hundreds, thousands or even millions of followers to stay in touch with the people they love without being overwhelmed by the noise.

Since integrating push notifications within an app can be expensive, we may see many third party developers go bankrupt trying to match the official Twitter app or simply ignore the feature (which could make them irrelevant).

Filtering The Chaos

In order to make the twitterverse less noisy, we may see the official Twitter app release filters in order to prevent information overload.

Twitter could allow users to not only filter out specific hash tags (like #followfriday, #tcot, #nowplaying, etc.) within searches, but also filter out words from their timeline (which might appeal to parents who want to keep their tweet stream family friendly.

Last but not least Twitter could enable users to filter out (or rather mute) annoying friends within their specific timeline without having to resort to the mighty block hammer.

This last feature would appeal to businesses who would want to follow their customers (to help build loyalty around their brand) without having to hear all the drama that goes on in their customers lives.

Choose Thy Media (Images And Video)

With the exception of Twittelator and Tweetie (in its current form), most twitter apps provide 5 or less options when it comes to choosing where to upload images (and less than 3 when it comes to video).

The official Twitter app could change this by integrating dozens of services (like Picasa, Flickr, YouTube, VideoPress, etc.) within the app, giving users more freedom as to where their media is stored.

Twitter could also keep Twetie’s custom option field open, which would appeal to power users seeking to host media content on their own server (especially bloggers using WordPress, Movabletype and Expression Engine).

Free Vs Premium (The Final Death Blow?)

Unfortunately the hardest issue for developers will not be the listed features above, but rather Twitter for iPhone being free (and yes free is a feature, at least in the minds of users).

Unless developers can find ways to differentiate themselves (perhaps by integrating Facebook and other social networks) then many users will probably be unwilling to pay for a premium app when the official one is “just as good.”

Developers may be able to survive by charging users for the ability to remove tweet ads (which Twitter for iPhone will inevitably use) as well as scheduled tweets (like HootSuite).

However unless Twitter for iPhone creates a lot of “ad hating power users,” developers may find it difficult to generate a profit in what will be a very crowded market.

(Image Credit: Viktor Vasnetsov)

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  1. By Tyler posted on May 1, 2010 at 8:44 pm
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    Is that the four horsemen of the apocolypse? If it is then the last one isn’t a very accurate depiction. Wasn’t he supposed to be all black and his face isn’t showing? Anyways, I loved how you incorporated the imagery into the post!

    Reply

  2. By Casey posted on May 2, 2010 at 4:42 am
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    The fourth rider (Death) rides a “pale” horse (a sickly green color). You might be thinking Ring Wraiths from The Lord of the Rings.

    Concerning the article, it will certainly be interesting to see the fallout (if any) that an official Twitter apps causes. I’ve been using Tweetie (Mac & iPhone) for quite some time finding it by far my favorite. I’m happy for the developer Loren to have been recognized for his hard work and hope he brings something amazing to the table with Twitter’s resources backing him.

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  3. By Julius posted on May 2, 2010 at 8:34 pm
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    The filtering (or muting) feature sounds really interesting. I’ll try to find out more about it. Thanks

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  4. By Ovais posted on May 5, 2010 at 11:39 am
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    I believe that it is good from consumer’s point of view as twitter apps is so famous in the world that other apps causing a real fall …. but ultimately it benefits the genral public.. delhidarshan.info
    ============================================================

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  5. By poer posted on September 21, 2010 at 2:40 pm
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    begin Quote “we may see the official Twitter app release filters in order to prevent information overload” end of quote
    > i didn’t find filter/mute feature in official twitter app for iPhone, where i can find it?
    thanks in advance

    Reply

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