Twitter

While we all sit and wait for the next OS update, what do you do on your Windows Phone?  Personally I waste a ton of time on Twitter.

So, what are your options for twitter on Windows Phone?  Let's take a look at a few:

 

Web

Web??  Sure, why not!  Using a web version of Twitter works just fine on Windows Phone and you shouldn't shy from it as an option.  You can use the mobile version (mobile.twitter.com) which is good, albeit feature starved.  It'll do the basics and is quite quick.

Alternatively, you can use the desktop version at www.twitter.com but you will need to change your browser settings to allow for desktop browsing.  The caveat being that it will need to be the older desktop version as the newest will not show.  Luckily a link will show with the option.

Another web service that works well is dabr.co.uk.  This is a mostly mobile web solution that works on almost any browser.  Give it a go!

 

Official Twitter app

Of course, using a web version of Twitter leaves you feeling one step away from actually being in the conversation.  A client allows for caching of messages and many more features.

The official Twitter app for Windows Phone is pretty good and worth using.  Its quick (as long as you change the cache settings to "high") and works in both portrait and landscape.  It'll give you all the features that you will need...err...mostly.  Unfortunately, there is no option for notifications and the live tile isn't so live.

 

Seesmic

This is a great twitter client to have on your device.  The biggest reason? You can have both Facebook and twitter access from it and can update to either, or.  In a recent update Seesmic greatly improved the startup time, making it far more useful in the Windows Phone world!  Unfortunately, there is no landscape support and neither notifications or a live tile.

 

Beezz

This is almost the little twitter app that could.  It's had a great start by offering in-app tweet counts for messages, mentions and messages and the interface works quite well.  The biggest reason it has for residing on your device is notification. Yay!

With notifications turned on you will get a "toast" notification at the top of your screen on new tweets.  You can control what level of tweet triggers this notification.

Apparently a live tile is coming soon but has been "coming soon" for months.  In a recent exchange with the developer he said they are back at it after enjoying the holidays.  Hey, its free, so we can't complain much, can we!

 

Birdsong

On the advice of Matt Miller of ZDNet and a twitter follower (@barnyardtech), I have just installed this twitter client.  Its actually the only one of these apps that costs money but I wanted to see if it was good enough to warrant the pocket change.  Sadly, it isn't.

While Birdsong looks quite nice and does have a great unread tweet count at the top of the screen it just doesn't do much else.  There is no notification feature and no live tile; two features I would expect over a free app like beezz.  Additionally, it seems to be very slow to load and refresh.  Lets hope for an update from these guys.

 

What Microsoft should have done

It would have been great to have twitter inclusion built right into Windows Phone.  Microsoft included Facebook in its people hub and it works like a charm.  It seems to make sense that twitter should be there as well and I have no idea why it isn't.

 

What I use

I tend to switch between apps quite a bit because there is no one app that does it all.  For sure, I use Beezz, mainly for notifications.  If I want to just jump in it tends to be with the official Twitter app, as it is fast and just works well.  If I want to post to Facebook and Twitter I use Seesmic…because that's my only option.

Well, mum's-the-word on the update coming from Microsoft.  While we know a couple things that will be added I'm looking forward to seeing what they can do that will help these third-party developers build more compelling twitter apps.  I'd actually love to see a version of Tweetdeck for Windows Phone but no idea if it's even in the cards.  What would you like to see in a Twitter app for Windows Phone?


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