Twinkle – New iPhone Twitter Client Uses Locate Me Features!

Twinkle iPhone Twitter appTwinkle iPhone Twitter app

Twinkle is a shiny (cough, excuse bad pun) new native Twitter client for the iPhone, that adds location-aware features to your Twittering.  It has a very nice and easy to use interface and works very well so far in my testing of it.

I’ve been using Twinkle fairly heavily for about a week now and have found quite a bit to like about it, and of course have also got some ‘wish list’ items for its next version.  Hit the jump for a quick rundown on each of these:

Things I Like:

  • The Locate Me feature.  Not sure if the appeal will last, but this just seems very cool, to combine Twitter with geo-location. It will be a lot more fun when more people are on Twinkle of course.  The Locate Me feature can easily be toggled On and Off.  If you choose to use it then you can use the ‘Near Me’ tab to see tweets from folks who are within X miles of your location.  The default is a 50-mile distance, and you can choose to change this to 1, 2, 10, 25, 100, 1,000, or 252,000.  So far, I cannot get miPhone native Twitter appy preference setting to ‘stick’ though – it always reverts back to 50 miles once I have exited and gone back into the program.  In any case, it is quite cool to see tweets from people in your same general area.
  • It’s got a nice, roomy update / posting screen.
  • You can add a picture right at the posting screen – one tap on a camera icon launches the camera and once you snap a pic, it takes you right back to the posting screen with your pic as an attachment.  This is a fun utility, but sadly the pics only show up within the Twinkle client (as a thumbnail which can be viewed full size with a tap on the thumbnail) – not on Twitter on the desktop.
  • The overall layout is nice and easy to use, and it has some helpful options.  When you click on a individual, for example, you have the option to do an @ reply or direct message, or see their profile and posts.  Very handy.
  • Its home button shows the little red numbers to indicate number of new tweets – while you are in the app – of course this would be even better if it worked when in the background as well

Some Wish List Items To Add or Improve On:

  • It would be nice to be able to choose different colors / themes for the program
  • When you view a Twitter user’s Profile and Posts page, you should have an option to choose to follow that person
  • Being able to switch between multiple Twitter accounts would also be very useful
  • A search / find ability for friends and people to follow would be good, and also being able to see who’s following you
  • Any ‘run in the background’ sort of ability would be interesting to see, though once you are following a few people this may not be very practical and is probably a battery killer.

So far, Twinkle is very nice to use, and has some unique, fun features.  It is missing some more basic ones that are found, for instance, in the Hahlo web app Twitter client, which it would be nice to see added, but I have to say this is already my favorite iPhone Twitter app.  I find myself using Twinkle a heck of a lot every day.  In fact, it has made it to a favored position on my first home screen.

Unfortunately, Twinkle is not publicly available just yet – but … the version I’ve been using is listed as RC(release candidate)4 and it sounds like the public release should be any moment!  We’ll do our best to let you know as soon as it’s out – if you’re a Twitter user you’ll definitely want to give this a look …

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  • http://twitter.com/waynesutton waynesutton

    This is exactly the kind of apps I was expecting when the SDK was announced. It’s good to see native iPhone apps released now and we don’t have to wait for the app store in June or July.

    Also this is second native twitter application announced in two weeks. Twitter may be the micro-blogging social network site that really pushes us in to mobile social networking in the next 6 months or year.

    I’m looking forward to twinkle, going to try to get an early beta. Please share if you find out how or where.

    I’m @waynesutton on twitter and I want to Twinkle!

  • http://isource.com/ patrick

    waynesutton – I agree that this style of app feels like a post-SDK offering – and it is great to see two (very worthwhile) native Twitter apps.
    Good news – Twinkle is out on Installer now. Hope that presentation on Twitter went real well!

  • robertchute

    Saw your blog post and decided to check Twinkle out. Very cool. Why not combine Twinkle and TwitterLocal though? TwitterLocal pulls location data direct from Twitter instead of just other Twinkle users. Whether Twinkle uses TwitterLocal or just builds their own system based on it’s concept I see it being more useful in this situation.

  • http://isource.com/ patrick

    robertchute – I don’t know much about TwitterLocal – but it sounds like it would be cool to get that in there as well ..

  • ahmed_h_1

    hey, i downloaded the twinkle client and needs registration (username and password), i dunno what to do. can anyone help?!

  • http://isource.com/ patrick

    ahmed – you need to go to http://twitter.com to setup a Twitter account. Twinkle is just a (very nice) client for Twitter – you need to be a Twitter registered user to use it.

    • Psychonem

      No you don't. Twinkle HAS an option for Twitter AND Facebook feeds, but is brought by Tapulous, Creaters of TapTapRevenge. It asked me the same thing and I make user name and password right there on the app. Once done that, it asked if I wanted to link Twitter and Facebook, I said no and I can still use the Tapulous part of it and see/reply to people's posts, and post my own.

      • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

        True – but going that route, you are not a Twitter user, which rather defeats the purpose for a Twitter client.

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  • Lolly23

    Awesome Feature.I hope apple will make such kind of advancements in technology in near future.
    Thank you.
    facia plate

  • http://www.tvvitterbug.com TvvitterBug

    Nice article!

    I think the Twitter client landscape has really changed in 2010. New approaches and design strategies have yielded some remarkable new Twitter clients.

    TvvitterBug 1.3 is currently in the approval process for release on the App Store this week. This release brings together the culmination of all the features, capabilities, and functionality most sought after in an iPhone/iPod Twitter App, including:

    1. All of the power you want, without the complexity you don’t.
    2. Five (TvvitterBug exclusive) user-customizable Tweet Views.
    3. Up to Five user accounts easily accessible from any view.
    4. Persistent Tweets between launchings so you can view your tweets anytime.
    5. Double-Tap Instant Update to easily and quickly refresh your tweet views on demand.
    6. Built-in Photo capabilities to add photos directly to your tweets.
    7. Built-in Translation support using any of the state-of-the-art web translation engines you choose, such as Google Translate, Yahoo Babelfish, or Promt Translator.
    8. Built-in Web Access to view tweet embedded pictures and other URLs.
    9. Editable User Profile, including setting a new Avatar picture.
    10. Support for both “Fixed” and “Editable” Retweets – your choice.
    11. Landscape support for both Views and Keyboard.
    12. Automatic Language detection and display – great when you’re surfing!
    13. The same ease-of-use and lightning fast operation as the original version.

    I think your readers would be interested in learning more about TvvitterBug from your review.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Given the interesting Twitter landscape in 2010, it's odd to see your comment on a post about a Twitter app released in early 2008.