Twitter Goes All Medieval on the Tweetdeck Product Line
The thrust of the article is that old technology is going the way of the dinosaur and the focus is going to be on better web experience.
What Got Deadpooled?
In a nutshell these four things will cease functioning by May:
- Tweetdeck Air for Desktop
- Tweetdeck for Android
- Tweetdeck for iPhone
- Support for Facebook integration
Keep in mind that this still leaves us with Tweetdeck in the browser, Desktop and or the Chrome app.
When I started using Twitter seriously I got into Tweetdeck Air and other than certain bugs that seemed to regress every few versions I loved it. This was just about the only app I needed Adobe Air for but it was worth it. With a standalone Windows Client it was time for the Air version to go.
Tweetdeck Desktop on Windows 7 is an awesomely good Twitter client but in Windows 8 I experienced a consistent resource leak leading to hangs / freezes / crashes.
Windows 8 has MetroTwit which was a great alternative to Tweetdeck but the Metro / New Windows UI version doesn’t entirely do it for me. I like having 8 or more of my Twitter lists open so Tweetdeck Web in Internet Explorer 10 was my next choice. (MetroTwit if you are reading this and I’m mistaken please comment on how to add extra columns, I couldn’t find it).
It’s not all bad news.
Twitter is streamlining their product line and whilst dropping support for Facebook integration is at face value a loss of major functionality, why should they support a competitor platform for content distribution? At the end of the day fewer products to support should mean more investment in new features and better quality. Hopefully Twitter will get their act together and provide a robust and consistent user experience regardless of mobile platform.
With that in mind, Twitter finally released an updated Windows Phone App whose UI is in line with the designs of the Android and iOS Twitter Apps (the minor UI difference in iOS is the menu-bar is below not above the tweets).
After testing it I discovered that: –
- The new Twitter UI on Windows Phone looks gorgeous and works nicely with slide enabled between major screens.
- Finally, finally, finally Twitter on Windows Phone gets reply all. This was the single most frustrating missing feature. Well done.
- There is a known issue with Twitter Live Tile; it doesn’t seem to work unless notifications are enabled and the counter only goes up to 1. Lame.
- Twitter cannot find my location even when other apps can (including Rowi… see below). Worse still, trending topics detects my location incorrectly and so I get topics in Turkish, thanks but no thanks.
- Twitter on Windows Phone did not get photo filters as in the Android version.
The main competitor to Twitter on Windows Phone is Rowi with a Lite (free but ad laden version) and a Pay (ad free version). Rowi has a slew of nice features and for as long as I’ve been using it has reply all and uses Aviary photo filters. Rowi has long been considered the best Twitter App on Windows Phone.
The basic functionality of Twitter on Windows Phone has caught up with Rowi and the sleek UI makes it tempting but the presence of bugs that QA should have caught and the absence of photo filters detracts from the whole package.
So come on Twitter, fix these bugs and give us some photo filter love. You still have some work to do before users get the same experience regardless of mobile platform.