Tweetie is one of the very best and most popular iPhone Twitter apps, and has long been a favorite of mine. Over recent months, I ‘ve grown to like a couple of its competitors “ Twitterrific and SimplyTweet “ quite a lot as well, and Twitterrific is probably my co-favorite alongside Tweetie now.
For the last several months, several of Tweetie ‘s main rivals in the ‘Best iPhone Twitter App ‘ arena have had some big updates and added a lot of new features and functionality, while Tweetie has stayed more or less stagnant apart from the odd bug-fix type update.
All that is about to change very soon “ with ‘Tweetie 2 ‘ due to be submitted for App Store approval this week if it ‘s final beta release goes well. There ‘s a possibly huge spanner in the works though
First the good news
If the final beta goes well, we should see the new Tweetie 2 in the App Store within the next couple of weeks or so (barring any oddball rejections by Apple)
Shared codebase with Tweetie for Mac. I love Tweetie for Mac, and have been using it since it launched back in April. This sounds like great news to me:
It ‘s been a long process, but it will be worth it. Once I sync the codebase for Tweetie for Mac and Tweetie for iPhone, expect an explosion in functionality. I will be able to explore new features in Tweetie for Mac, pushing out updates there instantly, and once I ‘m confident that changes are stable, push updates to the iPhone.
It ‘s going to add video tweeting, and a lot more OS 3.0 features goodness:
Tweetie 1 set a new standard for Twitter clients and iPhone apps in general. It proved that you didn ‘t have to sacrifice intuitiveness for functionality. Today we have iPhone OS 3.0, 3GS, and new Twitter APIs. Tweetie 2 is built from the ground up to take advantage of these fantastic new technologies.
First, Tweetie 2 is OS 3.0+ only. If you haven ‘t updated, now ‘s the time. It leverages everything, from the fun things like video recording (of course you can video tweet), to the downright awesome things like UISearchDisplayController so you live-filter your tweet stream, just like Mail.
Live filtering sounds tremendous.
The app ‘s offline and persistence capabilities are about to go through the roof as well
It contains a metric ton of new stuff. There is full persistence – not just caching tweets for offline reading, but remembering where you are in the app. You could be viewing a conversation of a tweet of a recent mention of one of your followers, quit the app (or get a phone call), and when you come back, the entire UI stack is restored. Speaking of offline reading, there is also a fantastic offline mode. You can favorite, follow, block, add to Instapaper and more all while offline. Next time you connect, all of those actions will be synced back up.
You ‘ll be able to do drafts
There ‘s a drafts manager, you can even use it to compose tweets and DMs while you ‘re on the subway, and blast them out simultaneously as soon as you get out. (And if you ‘re a fan of Birdhouse, you can now send drafts to it from Tweetie).
Here ‘s just one more that sounds just superb to me:
You can link up Twitter users to contacts in your iPhone Address Book. Forget just adding notes, you can link up with email addresses, phone numbers, and more – and even better, all of that linkage information is backed up when you sync your phone.
There are lots and lots more too “ from saved searches that will sync to the upcoming Tweetie 2 for Mac to a complete overhaul of the compose screen. It really does sound like Tweetie 2 will be right back at the very top of the list of great iPhone Twitter apps. Its developer definitely thinks so
Every single one of these features fits naturally into the user interface, none adds unnecessary complexity. It ‘s arguably even simpler than Tweetie 1, all while being vastly more powerful.
Check out the Atebits blog post HERE for all the details.
The Potentially Very Bad News for Current Tweetie Users
I hope I ‘m misreading or misinterpreting this section of the Atebits blog post:
Tweetie 2 for Mac will be a completely free upgrade. (So if you haven ‘t already grabbed a license, feel free to do so). On the other hand, Tweetie 2 for iPhone will be a whole new app. And while it ‘s arguably worth a lot more, I ‘m keeping the price exactly the same: $2.99.
My reading of that is that there will be no update to Tweetie in its current version “ but just a brand new Tweetie 2 app. The Tweetie 2 app honestly sounds tremendous to me, but if it ‘s not going to be free or very heavily discounted for existing users, I can see it getting a very rough reception from Tweetie users.
I ‘m a reviewer “ I ‘ll grab the new app no matter what as I can ‘t wait to see what it can do “ but I really don ‘t know if ‘normal ‘ (non-reviewer) type users would feel the same about forking out another $2.99.
Hope I ‘m wrong on the interpretation or that we ‘ll soon hear of a very good upgrade policy for current Tweetie users.
For now, follow @atebits and @tweetie for status updates as well as ‘screenshots, screencasts, and some other sneak peeks ‘.
UPDATE: According to TechCrunch, my initial reading of the new app / price info is right “ and there is very bad news for existing Tweetie users:
The app will be $2.99, just like the first version was. Sadly, this will not be a free upgrade for existing Tweetie for iPhone users, as Britcher considers this to be (and has made it) a completely new app. Still, it ‘s easily worth the price.
Yikes. Bad Call. Very bad call in my view. More on that later.