No More Tweetdeck, TwitPic, Twitter Apps Doing Their Own Shtick?

While it's not a certainty, but the life expectancy of most of Twitter's 3rd party clients may be short-lived, based on Twitter's recent moratorium on new API builds by developers. Ryan Sarver, director of platform published an official decree stating that when "developers ask us if they should build client apps that mimic or reproduce the mainstream Twitter consumer experience. The answer is no."

Ryan SarverRyan SarverThe rationale according to Sarver is that since 90 percent of Twitter's active users use Twitter's official apps, the microblogging site wants to keep tighter control. They will however continue to support analytical packages that brings value to the user experience, but feel that mainstream members of the Twitterati are confused by the different interfaces, particularly on mobile devices.

This was Twitter's motivation for acquiring Tweetie last April and developing their own official iPhone app. "It is the reason why we have developed official apps for the Mac, iPad, Android and Windows Phone, and worked with RIM on their Twitter for Blackberry App," Sarver adds.

This apparently is knocking out the popular ÜberTwitter app and its Blackberry platform. In February, Twitter announced it had suspended the app for "violating the company's API policies" shocking many in the Twitter community

Laura FittonLaura FittonOf course, OneForty, the Apple store for Twitter apps, developed by Laura Fitton did not take kindly to the news. Quoted in a ReadWriteWeb report, she stated, "a consistent user experience is exactly the wrong direction to go in. Twitter needs diverse-only experiences if it's going to continue to grow - a monoculture would stifle it growth - that would be like saying all websites should look the same."

The report went on further to say that "Tweetdeck had better watch its back - all those Tweetdeck columns, loved by power users, are awfully confusing by mainstream users anyway." 

Noted in a PCMAg report, Lance Ulanoff stated, "what is to stop Twitter from going forward after services that use part or all of the Twitter name - does anyone think that TwitPic is safe?"

And what about geo-location apps? In an article I wrote back in January, 2010, titled "Twitter & GeoAPI's Great Land Rush of 2010," I focused on the emerging popularity of location-based social networks (a la Foursquare) and predicted that with Twitter's acquisition of Mixer Labs and GeoAPI, there was a big question mark whether Twitter would continue to work with 3rd party clients that focused on "location" apps. This was Twitter's largest acquisition to date, and it appeared to me that this was the first sign of Twitter taking app developed in-house.

The irony here is not lost. Twitter appears to be closing down relationships that just a short few years ago it was wooing to help it grow its user-base. Facebook and Google continue to use 3rd party app development and even conduct annual development conferences to motivate more developers to join and add to the growth of their respective companies.

Did Twitter become to big for its own britches - or does there come a time when a successful Internet enterprise can go it alone - and rely on its own internal infrastructure to innovate and develop enhancements for the future?

Love to hear from the development community on this? Please weigh in with your comments.

Mar 12, 2011
by Anonymous


"Mommy! I do not understand why my ubbr app is being blocked by Twitter! I'm trying to make money and i should be able to do it"
"Son, you should have developed something that they would not replicate or launch themselves instead of listening to the social media experts or dumb journalists "

Mar 12, 2011
by Ron Callari


Hey, who you calling a dumb journalist?? ; -)

Mar 12, 2011
by Anonymous

Frankly I prefer tweetdeck

Frankly I prefer tweetdeck because it has both facebook and twitter, as well as looking great, having good widgets and functionality. If twitter decide to piss all over tweetdeck, I'll end up using twitter a whole lot less, and it will be a lot more frustrating.

Mar 12, 2011
by Anonymous

Good AND bad

I use a few venues to access Twitter...among them, the website itself, texting directly to 40404, Twidget in Mac OS X, and personal favorite. Syrinx, though, uses what one might consider to be a "NON-STANDARD" format in how Tweets are displayed. If the apps can achieve a universal standard, then it's not a big deal.

Mar 14, 2011
by Anonymous

Twitter is making a mistake

Twitter should think twice before alienating its heavier users. Tweetdeck doesn't "mimic" the twitter timeline user experience; which is exactly WHY I, and everyone else I know, uses it. The twitter timeline and website are horrific to say the least when it comes to organizing and disseminating information. Always has been, and most likely always would be. of the "other 90%" of twitter users, 50% are spammers, 40% havent used the site in 2 years, and the other 10% signed up because someone on facebook told them to.

Mar 16, 2011
by Anonymous

What mainstream users? Only

What mainstream users? Only 8% of Internet users use Twitter.

Jul 28, 2011
by Anonymous

I really like TwitPic/TwitGoo

Don't get rid of it.....What can I use to upload pictures to Twitter through my phone via SMS....Not all of us have Internet through our phones!!!!