Twitter app Tweetie for iPhone
Twitter app Tweetie for iPhone

For all Twitter users that have the Tweetie Twitter app, a new dawn has come with their upgraded Tweetie2 which is called “BigBird.”

Based on a preview that was provided by ChicagoNow’s Scott Kleinberg, he states that the new app seems totally different, in so many ways, that it could be a brand-new app and not a simple upgrade.

Among the many new features is a quick menu that gives the user an easier GUI, you can now send video tweets as well as conversation threading, draft management, and geotagging.

Loren Bricheter, the Tweetie2 app developer claims that the new app is not an upgrade, it is, in fact, a whole new app. The code was re-written to provide more flexibility as well as provide 3rd party services, and a lot of configuration chooses as well as access to all Twitter API settings.

There is a downside, as with all new apps, which this one is, and not an upgrade, comes pricing. So any Tweetie lover will need to part with $2.99 to download the new version. This is great news for Twitter since it will increase their profitability, but many users are upset, especially when you factor the single tweet views and the pinstripe backgrounds that some valued customers are not too happy about.

iPhone apps are perhaps the cause of this cost because the iPhone developers code does not allow for major updates to be added as an upgrade. Basic iPhone upgrades are small changes, which can be offered in different version numbering. However, when it comes to a major upgrade or re-write, iPhone will not identify it as an upgrade to an older version. Hence the new app and the cost to previous app holders.

Personally, I don’t see an issue with the price, $2.99 is a reasonable price for continued access to such a great service. I also don’t hold any stock in people that moan about a $3.00 app price, when you think about all the development hours and QC testing that went into producing a new app. Paying under $3 should not be a problem. If you don’t like the price, don’t buy the product, or stay with the old Tweetie.

The final build will most probably come a few weeks down the line; it looks like the beta testing has provided enough data to finish the product and have it on the market in July. This is supported by the fact that Twitter has already sent in the app to Apple for review.

Best Twitter Apps

Twitter

Were you ever been asked by your English (Language) teacher at school to write down your thoughts in 140 characters (that’s letters, spaces, numbers and punctuation marks)? Well, guess what, Twitter is a great English or another Language teacher since it teaches everyone that uses it to describe or explain something within 140 characters concisely.

What is also great about Twitter is that it creates a fast chat back environment where you need to word your responses fast and concisely. Twitter has recently become a global phenomenon due to President Trump’s excessive use of it as a Presidential messaging method. Now politicians, millionaires, and the next-door neighbor’s illegal immigrant pool cleaner all use it together.

Let’s take a closer look at Twitter as a stand-alone app and then look at the global proliferation of third-party apps that have popped up, all to provide Twitter users with a power-up for specific functions.

Tokens

One of the most infuriating issues that we have to deal with in this insane world of fast information transfer is the Twitter Token. Twitter created what they call the Token which they give to every developer that has produced a Twitter 3rd party app. Once the app has downloaded a certain number of times, the tokens run out, and that app cannot be downloaded anymore.

Bluntly put, it’s an undemocratic capitalistic way to make sure none of the 3rd party Twitter add-ons bypass Twitter in the number of downloads. There are ways around this, but most developers don’t bother trying to work their way into Twitter’s bad books so once in a while, an excellent Twitter add-on will disappear from the download stores, and one of those is Flamingo.

Flamingo is so damned good that anyone who has it would love to upgrade and get a new one, but no, Twitter has limited Flamingo through their Tokens, and Flamingo has no more Tokens.

Flamingo’s developer Sam Ruston explained to an interested user why his app was no longer available online:

Sam Ruston

@Sam_Ruston

Very close to the token limit, so it has been unpublished. You can still download it if you have purchased it previously by looking in the My Apps section of Google Play

11:15 PM – Apr 4, 2018

So now we see the end of Flamingo, and its current users will continue to enjoy it while its competitors will fill in the vacuum.

Now let’s take a look at some of the current available Twitter clients. I have only taken 5 of the top apps; some are golden oldies, others new and revised. There are literally tens of Twitter clients, some are really amazing, I did not cover all of them here, so if one of the really great ones is missing from this list, sorry, but life is not fair.

Daily 140

This app sends you a daily email with the most recent Twitter follows and favorites you find preset. The app is simple, after downloading you:

  1. Enter the Twitter handles you want to track.
  2. You’ll automatically receive an email every morning with a summary of the Twitter accounts of each of those users followed, and the tweets that they liked, within the last 24 hours.
  3. The app also monitors likes, favorites, and follows of friends, influencers, celebrities, competitors, or just accounts you find interesting.

You can change the accounts you track as often needed.

Twitonomy

This app gives you a very comprehensive dashboard of analytics for whichever Twitter user you choose, including your own account.

Among the many features you find on this app are:

  1. You get a detailed visual analytic screen of anyone’s tweets, retweets, replies, mentions, hashtags, etc.
  2. You can browse, search, filter and get insights on accounts you follow and accounts that follow you.
  3. The app will backup/export tweets, retweets, mentions and reports to Excel & PDF
  4. It will monitor your interactions with other Twitter users
  5. You can export Search Analytics for any keywords, #hashtags, URL or @users
  6. It provides you with insights on and download any user’s retweeted & favorited tweets
  7. You can browse, search, filter, sort, and batch add/remove people to your lists
  8. It will monitor tweets from your favorite users, lists, and keyword searches
  9. Find out whom you follow but don’t follow you back
  10. And much more…

Fenix 2

Price: $2.99

Fenix 2 is the next generation Fenix, and it has evolved into a more convenient app., which only disappeared because of the…yes, you know it; Tokens! Yaay. This is new revised Fenix replaces the old one and quite rightly so. Maybe the Token business is an evolutionary gene code to make things evolve through force. Whatever, here are the upgraded features that Fenix 2 brings to you:

It supports multiple accounts and has a fully customizable main screen. You list and save searches on this main screen with a swipe. The app gives you a large variety of amazing images and videos previews and also supports external websites such as YouTube, Instagram, Vine, and Flickr.

The new Fenix 2 has a wonderful conversations layout, and you can mute the system against noisy or unwanted users, hashtags or keywords. There are light and dark themes to choose from.

Just download this app and enjoy…until the Tokens run out.

Customer Reviews of Fenix 2

elle

July 13, 2018

Works pretty well, but favorite notifications are slow even with streaming on. Also, there’s no way to undo an RT later on. Not essential, but it’d be nice if there were more customization options such as auto-playing videos without sound in the timeline, as well as full-size photos within the timeline that take up the entire width of your screen.

Bluefire Spotcat

July 1, 2018

I’ve been using Talon for over a year, but I started getting annoyed with its handling of media, so I came back to Fenix. Wow. I love the simplistic theme, the quick responsiveness, and just overall how it organizes things. A+ to the devs. Now if it could handle video better, it would be perfect!

Hootsuite

Price: Free / $19.99+ per month

Let’s start off by stating that HootSuite is one of the original Twitter apps but is also a social media following app, so it doesn’t rely on Twitter Tokens to stunt its growth. Essentially, Hootsuite has bypassed the Twitter token system by offering itself to provide connectivity with Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and other apps from one central hub.

An excerpt from Youtube states that: “Hootsuite is the world’s leading social media management platform with over 15 million users including 800+ of the world’s Fortune 1000 companies” I don’t know if that is true because Hootsuite wrote that, but it is damned close to the truth. What makes HootSuite stand out from other apps is that this is a mega company and not a small app office in someone’s house. HootSuite has around 1,000 employees placed in 13 global locations and have raised over $100 million in venture capital. So, you know they are seriously serious. (and I state this fact Seriously).

So, what is HootSuite?

Well, it’s a social media account manager, and Twitter is one of those accounts. However it is much more, it is, in fact, a Brand management platform aimed at getting out your messages across all the social media platforms.

  • Manage from one place

When you download HootSuite, you get an impressive dashboard which gives you a birds-eye view of all the services you have set up for your brand management.

  • Reply with a single click

When you get messages or are notified of brand mentions or comments in any of your social media accounts, the system will let you type in a reply and transmit it automatically to all your accounts.

  • Track performance (Analytics)

HootSuite provides you with enough analytical data in easy to digest graphic data formats; You can then decide which campaigns need to be tweaked, which ones stopped and where you need to create a presence.

 

As you can see, this is more than just an app; it’s a comprehensive suite of tools that you control from either your PC or mobile device. There is a pricing system, and it starts with a free trial, followed by a basic plan for $19.99/month where you manage 1 user account with up to 10 social profiles. The next level is a pricy $99.99/month; this gives you 3 user accounts with 20 social profiles. (Which make me ask, why not open up 3 basic plans and pay only $60 for 30 social profiles and 3 user accounts?) and don’t b.s. me about analytics.

Talon

Price: Free / $2.99-$10.00

DOWNLOAD ON GOOGLE PLAY

Talon for Twitter is extremely popular and considered to be one of the top three Twitter client apps on the market today.

What makes Talon so special is its GUI, the fact that it supports two accounts, it has Android Wear support and has a native YouTube player which lets you stay in the app for your videos. Talon is the brainchild of Klinker Apps which also made Pulse SMS, Evolve SMS, and many other useful apps.

 

Let’s start off by stating that Talon is a customizable app which is great, and this makes all the annoying little features, such as the FAB disappearing when scrolling up, handled in the settings screen. You can also re-arrange the columns (similar to Fenix 2).

While it is customizable, it comes with only three themes, these are light, dark and black, but they allow you to set custom main/accent colors for each theme. You can also change the look of tweets, preset your screen fonts, as well as spacing and photo toggling. That is not all; you can also customize your widget appearance too.

 

Screen preview left to right: a Light, dark, and black theme with the default main/accent colors

What Talon realizes it that users like to control their environments and to customize the themes and environment will always be considered a great plus even when the overall functionality of the app is similar to others. Bottom line, its all about marketing, and apps are visual tools.

 

The operational features that Talon presents include an exceptional compose screen. Easy switching between accounts with the ability to tweet from more than an account at once. You also get a location toggle, and a GIF button to embed GIPHY image. You can also schedule a tweet as well as a set fingerprint to post anything.

Now let’s go in deeper, Talon also integrates with the Android Wear watch. This is not an AW 2.0 app; this means that you have to install Talon on your phone. The benefit of the Watch app is that you use it to catch up on your timeline and send tweets with your voice.

 

OK, the world is not perfect, or let’s say the world is perfect, but human production is far from perfect, so, now for the cons. Navigation is a bitch. You need to perform multiple clicks to get to some features, such as turning on the night mode. Apart from these navigational issues that are less GUI perfect and can be annoying, the overall feel is great. Talon is well deserving of its top three Twitter client apps position.

Twidere

Price: Free / Up to $3.99

DOWNLOAD ON GOOGLE PLAY

Twidere for Twitter is a newbie; it is also different from its competitors in that is an open source app. This means that you get a comprehensive functioning app that provides you with as many features as its competitors and even more since with free source code comes a lot of useful snippets.

Twidere is a Tweetings look-alike that is free, so that is the first advantage. Since it’s a free app, when you download it you are notified by the original creator about what you get, what you could get, and whose fault anything is if you don’t get what you thought you could get. (got it?)

Remember our Token issue, well twitter is on a one way Lemming fest to the sea, and if it continues to Twitter along without looking where it is going, even President Trump’s tweets won’t save it from a competitor that will be third-party friendly.

Apart from the Twitter Token issue, Twidere also notifies you that it is tracking you. So if you are a spy, a criminal or someone with bad taste, don’t download this app.

Oh, and if you think you can opt out of tracking, forget it, you can’t. This is a nice fresh approach, where you know where you are and you can either accept this or not.

Nontime based Themes

Twidere comes with two themes, black and white, but they are just themes, not interactive and will not change with the time of day or seasons. Once you pick a theme, that’s it, although you can toggle between themes for your own satisfaction.

Twidere’s tabs are customizable, but you cannot change the order they are in, what you can do is add new custom tabs.

Interacting With Tweets and Users

The screenshot on the left gives you the context menu of your tweet, and the screen on the right shows you your friends tweets. What you can do with your tweets is erase them, you cannot do much with your friend’s tweets, but that’s to be expected.

Both menus, however, give you full control of basic functions from a global and not individual tweet level.

Once you go into an individual tweet, you will get these screens:

This is one of the cons in Twidere, Twidere doesn’t have a built-in browser, so any links you click will open up your browser. This is actually a bonus for some since browsers tend to be more powerful when not built into other apps., and you can use the functions of the browser for saving links in your favorites.

The User Profile Screen

This screen gives you a lot of features but lacks a mute option, and this comes in handy for re-tweets, and you can set colors to users.

Look and Feel (Settings)

Twidere gives you one of the most comprehensive customization settings there are, and these can be seen in the screenshots.

What you get is an active real-time look and feel of a tweet as and when you make a change in the display settings. This is great to adjust the app quickly and something most of its competitors do not have.

Twidere also has a way around rate limits:

In the right screenshot, you see the network configuration setting, and it has a consumer key and secret consumer field. These link via Twidere’s Google Play page to a gist on Github that lets you copy a consumer key and secret which avoid the rate limits. These little tricks are the creation of inventive minds that try to evolve within Twitters stupid API’s.

Bottom Line

Twidere is a great app, it is in the top list together with Tweetings, which I have not reviewed here, but then I haven’t reviewed many other Twitter clients that compete for top dog (oops, faux pas?) Top Bird.