APP OF THE DAY: Tweetbot review (iPad)
How much of a Twitter fan are you, no really, because if the answer is enough to want to pay £1.99 for an iPad app then you probably want to sit up and pay attention.
If however you are still reeling in shock over the mere thought of paying £1.99, then it's fair to say that this app probably isn't going to be for you and you should probably just stick to the perfectly able, and useful, official Twitter app for the iPad.
That out of the way, let us tell you what the hell Tweetbot is, and why you should consider it for the iPad and your Tweeting obsession.
Tweetbot for iPad
- iOS 4.3
Created for the "heavy user" of Twitter, Tweetbot allows a level of customisation we haven't seen before in a Twitter app, bringing with it a number of nice features, along with a simple to use interface that will make you want to keep it open most of the time.
The very different layout is the first thing you'll notice. Designed to be used in portrait rather than landscape - we don't think the interface uses the landscape space the iPad provides to the best of its advantage - everything is clearly laid out with a strong focus on gestures to control what's happening. A triple tap on a tweet, for example, lets you reply instantly, while a swipe to the left lets you see the conversation quickly.
But it isn't just about making conversations easy. Understanding that too many followers can be somewhat noisy at the best of times, Tweetbot lets you have multiple Timelines, allowing you to switch into what we like to call "weekend mode" if you've taken the effort to create a special list of your favourite people - it's a really nice feature and one we can see many using.
That filtering out the nose goes one step further by allowing you to mute people if they are being too noisy, either for a day, a week, a month, or banish them forever.
It isn't just people you can mute, but hashtags and clients as well, allowing you to either block out tweets on a specific subject you aren't interested in, but all of a sudden those that you follow are, or to block tweets from a certain apps or service like Tumblr or Spotify, for example.
Better still, you can also search your timeline for specific tweets, with the Timeline shrinking as you type to reveal the streamlined results. Never again will you have to scroll back through your Timeline trying to find that tweet you remembered seeing a couple of hours before.
When you do use the service to read the tweets you want to read, it is all very simple and easy to use. Tweets automatically load in without you having to hit the refresh button and reading, replying and chatting to your followers works as you would expect.
Links are opened in Tweetbot's own very speedy browser rather than Apple's Safari on the iPad, and the app has Readability support build in as standard (accessed by a flick of a switch), making it even easier to read articles stripping out all the faff at the same time.
As you can imagine every link and tweet has the ability to be easily forwarded to email, Safari, Twitter or Read Later making this "super social".
Composing tweets is just as comprehensive. Location can be automatically added and removed if you are in a top-secret location, while the app auto suggests followers and hashtags as soon as you start typing. Adding pictures is just as easy.
There is room to improve though: for us, the landscape view isn't as well designed as it could have been. It's not that the app doesn't work, it's just that there is a lot of unneeded grey space compared to the more tightly designed portrait mode and we suspect that the iPhone app that precedes this iPad version has skewed the developers' thinking.
That said, while Tweetbot might cost £1.99, the features are far superior to what the official Twitter for iPad app offers, making this the perfect choice for the "power user".
Tweeting doesn't get any easier than this.