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Thoughts on the Official BlackBerry Twitter Application

BlackBerry_pictures_QL_1021291800 With RIM’s closed private beta release of their new Twitter application last week, the team and I have been putting the application through the paces and have come up with a rather broad list of observations, necessary enhancements, and suggestions.

First off, let me say that it’s my opinion that this application has great potential.  For one, I love the message integration. Other than YATCA, I’m not familiar with a client that integrates, and unfortunately, YATCA integrates EVERY tweet.  A nightmare for anyone who follows more than a few dozen people.The overall UI is quality.  I only wish that RIM would have learned from those who went before, as many of the early folks ( Ubertwitter, SocialScope and the like) had several of the same issues. I am hoping that the fact that RIM intends to release this to the masses in a month or so, that rapid enhancements are made. I’m sure many of these below are on the list for future development, and this is RIM’s first dive into this.  I’m guessing that this was released merely to test their network etc, and get initial feebback.

On to the details.  I’ll break this down into “Must Enhance” and “Wishlist

Must Enhance

  • More user defined options. Both Tweet Genius and Ubertwitter allow you to set the size of the tweets, enabling you to maximize your screen with more tweets should you desire.
  • Shortcuts! Refresh, retweet etc need to be functions easily accomplished without going into the menu.
  • Need to be able to pull down more than 100 tweets at a time
  • Needs support for URL shortener
  • Support for Twitter lists
  • Different colors for @replies and direct messages in the timeline
  • I’m sure this is on schedule, but device lag is pretty significant at this point, must be improved
  • Ability to store avatars on SD Card, speeding loading of timeline
  • When viewing a full tweet, only reply seems to be an option, no retweet.  Seems to only be available from the timeline
  • Maybe it’s a pet peeve, but many of us prefer the actual time stamp on tweets in our timeline, not “ posted 4 min ago”
  • Ability to add comments while retweeting, without a cumbersome workaround.


  • Multiple account integration without having to sign out, and sign in another account.  Ubertwitter is by far the best option at the moment.
  • Could save some dashboard space by combining search for people and search option tab.
  • Ability to click on an avatar and view the picture in a larger format
  • Ability to edit your profile, change your avatar from the app.

All in all, I think this is a very good start.  Many of the quality features of other Twitter clients are incorporated with this, and with many of these needs I’m certain things are already in development.  While it may be the case already and we’re unaware, there are so many outstanding 3rd party application developers, I am surprised RIM doesn’t hire some up for projects such as this.  But in any event, I’m excited to see the progression from now until official release.  Those who have this, we’d love to hear your comments!

13 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. > YATCA integrates EVERY tweet
    That’s why I LOVE YATCA – what does it help when it’s said in my message app that I have new tweets – I am asking myself from who? -> When you have too much tweets in your Messages don’t follow them 🙂 Or create a second “spam me up” account… Actually that’s what I did.. Use my “that are really important tweets for me” Account with YATCA and the other ones I use with the RIM TwitterClient…

    When I am allowed to add something to the wish list -> “remote control” capabilities for 3’rd part app developers e.g. via CommandLine parameters

  2. It is nice to see another Twitter app but it seems that RIM is doing a disservice to the people that have made paid Twitter apps in App World. Will they start making free deluxe themes because themers are making money? Do you see my point? Apple doesn’t make Twitter apps. I don’t think RIM should either. They should move the resources over to the webkit team.

    • I’ve yet to see a Twitter app in App World worth paying for, so I don’t think they’re doing a disservice to the Twitter app developers. And RIM is rumored to have an interest in a major theme site, so I doubt you’ll see them start pushing out too many free themes. I know they want apps like this on their devices similar to FB, MySpace etc ( the icon where you click to download) so its an easy proposition to new BB adopters, who are avid tweeters ( think consumer devices, and 16-24 age group). Just my two cents

  3. Can I add one more – the ability to remember the last tweet read & stay at that position. I hate having to read backwards in a timeline.

  4. whatever they push out to the masses will get a few bugfixes and that should be about it for a year or two. case in point: facebook. that thing is still getting bad reviews and i don’t think i’ve seen a release in over a year or close to it.

    and in all of these rim tools (all IMs, myspace, facebook, twitter)… where is the option to login to and save information for multiple accounts? sure message list integration is cool, but i can only hope someday twitter will get some love from beejive so i can login to more than one account at a time.

  5. The problem is all of Blackberry’s apps are SO slow. It is such a HASSEL to go into the Facebook app for Blackberry, when going on the phone internet is WAY quicker!!! I thought the point of an app was to be fast and convenient so you don’t have to go on the internet. If I want to send a message, I don’t have 4 hours just to wait just for 3% of friends to be ready.

  6. i just can say ubertwitter still number one for twitter app – since the new twitter for bb still a lot things to improve – retweet function – friend list does not automatic pop up when you type @ – and the connection a little bit slow compare to uber..aniwei hope RIM will fix it more better than uber

  7. @cdsh – I share your view on this, UT has this function when scrolling into the timeline it takes you to the last tweet from the previous fetch.

    I still believe they need to fix what they have on the screen, I would loose the Tweet now box and have that as a Menu option as “New Tweet” this will just save on a big portion of the screen being consumed by something that is used less than reading tweets.

    Re-tweeting needs to be editable! UT give you multiple options on this.

    The nav bar/menu needs some re-ordering: Move DM icon and Mentions icon alongside each other and the My Profile to the extreme right/left or Top/bottom.

  8. This reviewer is mistaken on one account. @replies do not show up in the timeline. U can only retrieve peoples replies to ur tweets via @mentions. And that’s one of the biggest problems with this app and it better be fixed because I thought the app has great potential but I cannot have a twitter app that doesn’t support twitter replies. Its a fundamental function of twitter and I am shocked that rim missed it. 🙁

    • Max
      I just tested and @replies show in my timeline just fine. Not sure why you have issues.

      • Unlike UT, they are not colourized with regards to the Background. I have overlooked several because there is no visual difference for the mentions.

        If this is inconsistent across users, then this is certainly a bug that needs to be resolved. However in my case too are showing in the timeline.

  9. Though this is still in beta it concerns me that Blackberry isn’t taking time to think ahead of the curve. Dear Blackberry, your users want apps to brag about… not just another marginal one to eat up memory. If there’s nothing unique to offer in your twitter app, why not just allow the existing 3rd party apps to suffice and do something groundbreaking… like working on improving the god awful web
    browser. Please take a note from Windows Mobile 7 who better understands the consumer market base and how to create the “wow” effect rather than going for the “just good enough” one. The world of smart phones is getting more competitive by the minute and Blackberrys seemingly snail pace development is pushing itself further & further behind. Smh

  10. On mine they don’t. I have to manually pull them from @mentions. Its insane. And quite a few people have the same problem. There are u tube videos about it and people complaining about it on crackberry forums and blackberryforums. Maybe its model specific, who knows.

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