The first few years of Twitter’s existence was the wild west. Twitter opened up their service with a powerful, nearly limitless API to allow anyone to make Twitter applications. After letting many unofficial mobile and desktop apps exist, Twitter made a bold move and asked people to stop building them. They then acquired Tweetie, one of the most popular 3rd party Twitter applications in an effort to consolidate the experience, launching official Twitter apps. Though this upset many developers, it allowed Twitter to expand on their feature set and create a consistency between platforms. They also promised an iPad app to launch soon after.
When the official Twitter iPad app launched, it was one of the more impressive iPad apps. Its columned interface made sense and worked well. However, some time after the iPad app made its debut, it started to become stale. Twitter began adding many great features to their website, including the ability to see interactions, discover new content and more. All of these great new additions would crossover to their mobile apps with updates. But what about their iPad app? Nothing changed. And worst of all, there’s no sign of improvements in the near future.
We reached out to Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter to try to make sense of this. “We honestly just forgot about our iPad app. Going back and looking at it again, we not only realize how disconnected it is from our mobile and web apps, but we were pleasantly surprised. It’s actually a pretty nice app. We were on to something”, Dick said. “I gotta say, this is inspiring me to go back and give it another look.”
We were taken aback by his severe lack of concern for the whole matter. We asked him to explain why Twitter has been so careless on updating the iPad experience. “Well, let’s be honest bro. I’ve got a lot on my plate. And I don’t even own an iPad. So it’s not exactly top of mind. I’ll tell you what”, he said, “We’ll need at least a few weeks to coordinate a meeting on this, but we’ll take that first step. Whether or not we’ll make the updates, I can’t say for sure at this point. But we certainly appreciate your concern.”