Before I entered the social part of the Internet, I was reluctant to share any kind of information. I can’t really remember how it all changed, it’s funny, because it wasn’t even that long ago — four or five years. Now I’ve got an account basically on every website I visit on a daily basis, including social sites. This means Facebook, Google+ and let’s not forget about twitter. At first, I was attracted to the idea of micro-blogging: sharing things you do as they happen, without the need of logging them or remembering them at the end of the day was different, and quite intriguing. Even though news sites and blogs use Twitter to spread the word about their published articles, it is still that micro-blogging service that we all know and love.
As with all services out there, Twitter has an API (Application Programming Interface) that enables application developers to create countless applications for viewing feeds and analyzing data. Devs have done just that and there are numerous clients on the Play Store that cater to different types of users. The one that caught my attention was Twitter’s own application and today I’ll try and share with you why I use it and not any other third party application.
As some of you might know, I was all about customization. I had to have any application that enabled me to change its User Interface somehow — from layout, to colors and font face. Twitter doesn’t have any of that, so you’re probably wondering why I like it.
On my LG Optimus One, everything was crowded and reading big portions of text was cumbersome and hard on my eyes. I had to use a third party application to change my display’s PPI (pixels per inch) to be bigger, thus reducing the size of the text and making reading a little bit more fluid. That wasn’t a solution. I liked the smaller text, but it became even more jagged and made some apps behave strangely.
I then searched for applications that allowed me to change the size of the font directly from within the applications settings. TweetDeck was the first good solution, but I wanted more. Colors came next. This had nothing to do with the screen’s performance. I just wanted to change the colors on my timeline. I found about Tweedle, an application I reviewed back in December. Sadly, it’s still in Beta and the developer has discontinued any further development on it.
Tweedle and Tweetdeck side-by-side.
Both TweetDeck and Tweedle were my go-to Twitter apps whenever I changed my ROM or I simply wanted a change. This all became irrelevant when I got my Nexus 4.
The displays PPI is about 300, which is what you find on most printed materials. It can’t get any crisper than that — well, it probably would on a 1080p display, but at that small size, you won’t be able to tell the difference between 300 and 400 PPI. Not only the text is sharper, but the screen real estate is bigger. That means that more content can fit at one time on the screen, thus removing the need to reduce the text size. All of a sudden, customization or hacking wasn’t needed anymore and the fact that other applications didn’t add many features on top of Twitter’s own client, made them feel like bloatware.
Editor Note: It might be worth noting too that, even though Robert is pretty happy with Twitter because he no longer needs customization, the official app has a few merits of its own that can make it the go-to app even for veteran users of the social network. It’s the only free app with Push notifications, it displays Favorites and Retweets inside your Interactions tab for an ego boost, it conserves conversations for a tweet by displaying what came before it and what comes after it, and it’s one of the most reliable clients for managing drafts and uploading photos. It’s also always the first client to get any new Twitter features, like the new photo roll on profiles, and will never suffer from the new API key limitations like Falcon Pro and any other third-party client.
In the end, for me at least, it’s not all about how many extra features you can cram into an application, it’s about whether the user needs them or not. Why should I install an application just because you can change its font size, color or layout? With these high-resolution displays, I feel that all this fancy stuff is just for showing off. I want something simple, straight to the point and Twitter does just that.