No, I’m not talking about a Twitter outage. Rather, I am talking about a huge shakeup in Twitter clients. Specifically, clients on the iPhone, iPod touch, & iPad.
This evening Twitter acquired Tweetie, and is hiring its creator, Loren Brichter, to their mobile team. Tweetie for iPhone will be renamed Twitter for iPhone, and its $2.99 pricetag will be slashed to the low price of free.
Twitter’s reasoning for the acquisition:
Careful analysis of the Twitter user experience in the iTunes AppStore revealed massive room for improvement. People are looking for an app from Twitter, and they’re not finding one. So, they get confused and give up. It’s important that we optimize for user benefit and create an awesome experience.
Twitter says in the next few weeks Tweetie Twitter for iPhone will be released in the App Store, and that Brichter will begin work on an iPad version as well. I must say I found it peculiar that Brichter didn’t have an iPad version out on the iPad’s launch day.
One has to wonder what will become of the long-promised Tweetie 2.0 for Mac? The last real news from Brichter on the matter was back in September 2009.
Even more so, one really has to wonder what will happen to all the other iPhone OS Twitter clients like TweetDeck and my personal favorite, Twitterrific. One thing is for sure — if you are a developer for an iPhone/iPad Twitter client, you probably want a drink or two about now.
Also worth noting is that Twitter has taken down their downloads page, which featured a slew of third party apps. I wonder if the grand scheme of things is to kill off the very clients that helped propel Twitter to where it is today?