Late Bloomer

October 5, 2010

I almost never tweet via Twitter.com. Echofon is on my phone and I use a Flock browser to stream my Twitter account in real time and Hootsuite to manage tweets from multiple accounts. The old Twitter interface always seemed so limited compared to the various apps I use to tweet. Although the lead up to the launch of new Twitter was protracted, it was well worth the wait.

 

Check out the new design - it's sleek and user friendly. In this image, you can't see the space below the top square -- I suspect will be used for advertisements in the future. Though it's too soon to say how Twitter will choose to serve ads, the new interface provides more opportunities for monetization than the old version.

 

Twitter has always lacked the interconnectedness of Facebook. Previously, if you saw an @ reply from one of the people you were following, you'd have to navigate to their page, then to the profile of person they were responding to for a sense of context. Now you can just click the tweet and see the conversation in the sliding side panel.

 

Beyond that, the inclusion of multimedia streams definitely makes the site stickier. Now that you can consume tweeted information on the site, there is simply more to interact with, do and see.

 

Mashable has another fascinating article, this on by Jennifer Van Grove, about how the new Twitter interface is a web-optimized version of Twitter's iPad app. Such a move, Van Grove posits, is aimed at edging desktop clients like Tweetdeck out of the market by making Twitter a destination website like Facebook.

 

It is a testament to our rate of adaptation - rather than simply replacing existing platforms, tablet applications are already influencing how we create content for those platforms. It is a two-way communication that maximizes both platforms while simultaneously providing reciprocal incentives for progress within each. As Van Grove points out, Twitter was essentially competing with its developers, struggling to make the actual site as relevant as its service.

 

Twitter's destination site potential has always laid dormant in the micro-blogging services' structure, but great design has alleviated its growing pains and put it one step closer to its destination.