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February 23, 2012

Twitter Updates Mobile App with Features Both Old and New


Twitter’s updated mobile app for iPhone and Android (News - Alert) exhibits some of the well-loved features lost in the last update while rolling out some new capabilities for mobile tweeters everywhere. “Both apps bring back high-demand features, including the swipe shortcut,” a Twitter (News - Alert) spokesperson stated on the Twitter blog, “and they also introduce new design and functionality improvements.”

Both platforms will feature the ability to find a friend’s Twitter handle by browsing through email and phone contact lists, as long as friends have authorized Twitter to allow people to contact them in this way.

For Android, the app now runs on Ice Cream Sandwich, which optimizes it for many Android devices including Kindle Fire and NOOK Color. For both Android and iPhone (News - Alert), the biggest update is the swipe shortcut, which allows users to share, favorite, reply and retweet messages without leaving their own timelines.

The most extensive updates are seen on the iPhone version. For instance, with iPhone, Twitter brought back the feature of being able to copy and paste text by pressing and holding. Twitter has also redesigned Direct Messages and brought back the ability to mark DMs as read.

In addition, iPhone users can change font sizes by going into the app’s Settings menu. Links from tweets can be copied by pressing and holding, and tweeters can enable the “Read it Later” function by going into the Advanced Settings menu. Users can see whether people follow them by checking on their profiles. Also, the startup time for iPhone is much faster than before.

Users can download the Android version of the app from the Android Market and the iPhone version from the iTunes Store. The iPad version of the app will also see updates at a later date.

Early reviews at the iTunes Store are mixed. The new app has only 2-1/2 stars, with many users complaining about bugs and difficulties with loading. Users also complained about the loss of landscape mode and about the change in the width of the screen. However, one user rated the app with five stars and summed up his rating with two words: “Swipe’s back!”




Edited by Rich Steeves
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