I need to start this post with a disclaimer. I’ve tried a lot of different Twitter apps. Some have features that others don’t. Many lack features that others have. The absolute best iOS Twitter app out there that does what I need it to is Tweetbot, without question. It’s a wonderful app, but it could be better. In this post, I’m going to list areas needing improvement. If your preferred app has any or all of these features, great. I’m not going anywhere. This is simply a call to the creators of Tweetbot to hopefully consider some of these tweaks in a future update. I don’t know the first thing about creating smartphone apps, so I’m sure there’s way more to it than what I realize. This is simply user feedback. So, without further ado, let’s begin.
1. Better RT counter
When scrolling through my timeline, I’ll often come across a tweet that I just know has caught fire. Luckily, Tweetbot has a feature that allows you view the number of RTs on a given tweet as well as who the RTers are. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work. Below is a screen cap displaying RTs of the most RT’d tweet in Twitter history, President Obama’s “Four more years.“
Oh, 93 RTs, you say? Uhh, no. How about 817,000+. I want to be able to see this detail. For whatever reason, Tweetbot caps its RT counter off in the high 80s/low 90s. Popular Twitter accounts often blow past those numbers within minutes. Now that Twitter has added accurate RT counts to the detailed view on any tweet, Tweetbot needs to follow suit.
2. A counter for Favorites
Similar to the RT counter, another tweet metric I often like to check is the Favorites count. Tweetbot offers a “View in Favstar” option, but again, it doesn’t work. I’ll use the same Obama tweet for this example.
Just a tad off on the Favorites count there, Tweetbot. The true count is 300,000+ Favorites. The “View in Favstar” option isn’t even a work-around to get an accurate RT count, as you can see. I want to be able to see accurate Favorite counts, and I want to have the ability to do it natively within the app, not through some third-party site.
3. Added feature for push notifications for specific accounts
I consider myself a power Twitter user. I do check my timeline quite often, but there is certain news that I just can’t receive quickly enough. This time of year, it’s NFL news. I want to know breaking NFL news the second that it happens. Twitter gets information out quickly, but only as often as you check your timeline. There are certain accounts that tweet vital, need-to-know information, and I’d love the ability to receive tweets from specific users via push notifications. As a current work-around, I am SMS subscribed to the following three accounts: @AdamSchefter, @MatthewBerryTMR, and @Deadspin. These three accounts pretty much cover every sports angle as it happens. Receiving their tweets via text message does the job, but it would be nice to cut out that step and receive push Tweetbot notifications of new tweets from desired accounts.
4. Auto-capitalize the first letter of @replies
I’m as conscientious of grammar/spelling/punctuation as they come, and I’m no different on Twitter. I pore over every tweet before sending to be sure and catch any errors. When composing a new tweet on Tweetbot, the first letter is automatically capitalized for you. However, when replying to a tweet, it is not. This is a minor annoyance, but it would save a step for grammar freaks like myself.
5. Auto-complete Twitter handles when composing a DM
I follow plenty of accounts, so I don’t have everyone’s handle memorized. The auto-complete feature when comping a new tweet or @reply is a life-saver, but for some reason, there is no auto-complete when composing a DM. This would be nice to have.
6. Allow push notifications to go through while you’re in the middle of composing tweet
Tweetbot’s push notifications for RTs, Favorites, and @replies are lightning fast, but for some reason, they don’t go through when you’re in the middle of composing a tweet. Any incoming push notification when you’re composing a new tweet gets stuck, then the minute you submit your tweet or cancel out, the notifications finally go through all at once. Again, a minor annoyance here, but I’m often late in conversation threads because of this. If someone replies while I’m in the middle of my reply, I won’t see it until after I’ve submitted my tweet. I’d like to be certain that I’m replying to the most recent tweet in the conversation thread.
7. Allow a default recipient in the “E-mail Tweet” option
Whenever I see a tweet that I want to read or refer back to later, I e-mail it to myself. My e-mail inbox is my to-do list. Some people use the Favorite button for this, but I prefer to only Favorite tweets a) that I think are funny/interesting, or b) to acknowledge that I saw and enjoyed a tweet, but don’t necessarily have a reply to. So anyway, I e-mail myself a lot of tweets throughout the course of a day. It’s a handy option, but I have to manually type in my e-mail address in order to send a tweet to myself. Tweetbot needs to add a “Default Recipient” option to save users this step. Back in my BlackBerry days, my Twitter app of choice (UberSocial) had this feature, which I loved. I do e-mail tweets to others on occasion, but 99% are to myself.
8. Improved “Copy Tweet” function
Whenever I see an interesting tweet, I’ll often copy it and text it to friends who don’t have Twitter. Tweetbot has a “Copy Tweet” feature, but it isn’t good. All it does is copy plain text from the body of the tweet. It doesn’t include the handle of the original tweeter, a time stamp, nor the tweet’s URL. UberSocial included all of this detail with their “Copy Tweet” function, so it would be nice if Tweetbot added the same.
I could create a list twice this size of all the things I love about Tweetbot, but that wouldn’t help in making it better. The developers behind Tweetbot are constantly pushing out tweaks/updates to this fantastic app, so I’m confident we’ll be seeing some of these features (and more) in future releases. Here’s to hoping they come sooner rather than later.