I’m still new to Twitter… fo sho’. I’m still really trying to get a grasp on what apps work for me and what don’t. When I’m on one of my computers, I’ll often just use twitter.com or sometimes TweetDeck on my windows system or Tweetie on OS X (that changes a lot). Of course, both of those are subject to be rejected at any time when I find something nicer.
I’m having the same issues on the iPhone, so I thought I’d take a VERY brief look at four big free Twitter apps for the iPhone. Specifically, Twitterrific, Tweet, TweetDeck, and TwitterFon. There are probably other free ones and even better paid ones… but I’m cheap. And lazy. So these are the ones I’m looking at. And FYI, this is FAR from any formal review. I don’t know jack about Twitter, like I said, I’m just trying to find something that works for me.
Echofon for Twitter: This is the one I started with. No real reason why – it was a random decision. It is certainly not a looker by any means. It does get the job done though. Annoyingly the ad for this free version is always at the top. The different types of tweets are spread across the bottom. Pretty simple, easy to follow. The compose button is in the upper right, like most of these apps. When typing up a new tweet, there is a button to add in a pic (either from the camera or your camera roll). There doesn’t seem to be an obvious way to shorten a URL though – which is annoying. Most of the reason I gave it up. Oh and no landscape.
Tweet: Hadn’t heard of this one until I decided to look up a few options for this “comparison.” It seems extremely simple. A lot of the same setup as TwitterFon – except probably even more basic. When composing a new Tweet, the options are even more limited. There is a button to add a photo – but only from your current library – I didn’t notice any way to take a new picture and add it on the fly. Honestly it’s not worth looking at… if I paid $.99 for it, I would be upset right now. It’s pretty bad. Oddly enough, it does support landscape tweeting – but its not enough to save it.
TweetDeck: Now I use this a little bit on my Windows system and it’s not bad. I’m used to the “multi pane” columns interface – but it seems a bit awkward on the iPhone. I just assume leave it out of the column view and swipe between maximized columns. I like the color scheme but the window seems a bit busy and confusing (at the bottom anyway). I think that is more so because of the layout they’ve gone with. It’s just… odd. Functional, but different. The New Tweet window has everything I’m looking for – on the fly pic uploading, url shortening – except one thing: landscape. This appears to be pretty rare. This one is definitely worth looking a little further into.
Twitterrific: So far this is one of my favs. I’m not even sure why (after seeing more of TweetDeck anyway). I like the color scheme… and the layout options. The navigation on the bottom isn’t incredibly intuitive. The New Tweet window is decent (still no landscape)… and most of my fav features are there – but it’s not great. I’m confusing myself more and more on this one. It’s not a bad app, but just doesn’t seem to function as well as I’d like. Not to mention the ads are at the top again like TwitterFon. There is actually a Premium version of Twitterrific that I may look into – at least for a feature comparison. If it has more of what I’m looking for, I may even consider paying for it… *gasp*
OK… that’s it. Those are my “observations” of these 4 FREE Twitter iPhone apps. I’m actually more confused now than when I started… so I have to play around some more before I settle on a final app. I really don’t think I’ll be paying for any though. It’s only Twitter after all. Hehe…