APP OF THE DAY: Plume for Twitter review (Android)

Twitter has changed the way a lot of people interact with each other. It’s a communication channel for friends, colleagues, companies and celebrities. Twitter lets you get a little closer to the things you care about, and tell everybody about things they don’t care about.

It has grown into a hugely important social networking tool. It’s not just people talking about what they had for breakfast, it is now a route by which people campaign for the things they believe, people give away tickets, prizes and information.

Sometimes, just keeping up with Twitter can seem a little overwhelming. Perhaps today’s app can make it that little bit easier for Android users. 

Plume for Twitter

Format
Android (Gingerbread/Honeycomb)
Price
Free/£1.73
Where
Android Market

Plume for Twitter is not only an interesting Twitter client, but also a good example of how we think apps should work across Android: on the 2.3.3 HTC Sensation it behaves one way, on the 3.1 Motorola Xoom it behaves another way, optimising what it displays, and how, to suit the size of the device you are using.

There are two versions on offer one is free and ad supported - we’ve not found the adverts to be too intrusive - and a paid version that we didn’t test. 

After signing in, Plume takes your Twitter account and presents it to you in logical columns - Timeline, Mentions, Direct Messages. On Honeycomb they appear on the same page in three columns and you can choose what appears in each column.

In Gingerbread you a single column display, which swipes left and right to move through the same run of information. You can also save custom searches (for usernames, hashtags, or just keywords) and these can be viewed in their own column. On Honeycomb you can swap your columns around, so for example you can have Timeline, Mentions and #bbcapprentice all displayed at the same time. 

It’s a system that makes it really easy to keep track of everything going on. Tapping a tweet will bring up the usual options, so you can reply, retweet, etc. Things are a little different here between phone and tablet, as if you want to view a link, the phone version will open your default browser, whereas the tablet version lets you view the link in a browser window within the app.

Tapping on the avatar of a person opens their profile where you can view their essential details, as well as follow or block. You also get a range of sharing options within the actions, allowing you to share (via all the normal Android routes and apps you have installed), you can view replies, mute users and copy a Tweet to the clipboard.

  

Plume also comes with widgets in various sizes and they are packed with functionality too. We did find that the Gingerbread widget didn’t support scrolling in HTC Sense, but it does alert you to this fact. On Honeycomb the widget is welcomed, fitting in nicely and offering plenty of homescreen control.

All in all, it’s a comprehensive take on Twitter, with plenty of customisation options and settings. We’re big fans of the Honeycomb version because it makes really effective use of the screen space you have available. It might be a little too much for some people, but its Honeycomb optimisation is a step ahead of many rival apps, making it one of our Honeycomb must-haves.

On your phone competition is a little more fierce. If you have a busy Twitter life then it is well worth a look, but if you’re simply keeping up with the latest celebrity banter, you might find you don’t need the run of options it offers.