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 my 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 …