The New Version of Twitter – What You’ll Like

February 21, 2012

in Business, Tech

new-twitter-interface

Have you been living under a rock? I have. So, when I logged into Twitter to share our latest post, I was surprised to see that yet again, a social media staple has taken on a new look (the last one, for me, was Facebook and its Timeline thing). Apparently, I really have been living under a rock, because according to Twitter’s blog, “It’s been available for mobile phones, via the mobile web, Twitter for iPhone and Twitter for Android, and we’ve been rolling it out steadily to Twitter.com. Now, everyone has access to it.”

I was given access to the older new version of Twitter before most of the other users, so I will forgive them this time for not giving me early access. (Or maybe they did, but, again, I’ve been under a giant rock).

Like the committed publisher that I am striving to be, I thought that nothing would be more timely than to discuss this new interface and the PROs. Since I always lean toward describing what sucks, I thought it might be useful to dive into the benefits and leave the cons for other haters.

It took me a little while, especially since I abhor major interface changes, but I did finally come up with 5 really nice things about the new Twitter interface, which they are affectionately calling the “New version of Twitter.” Love it.

1. Clean Layout for Interactions

twitter-interactions

Interactions are basically everything that anyone does connected to you. It includes mentions and retweets, but it also includes your new followers WHEN they followed you. I find that very informative. If someone followed me three weeks ago, and I never followed them back, well, that would be typical but wow I am still really embarrassed about that. The clean and clear delineations here make it much easier to be a responsible and friendly person, if that’s what you’re into (and who isn’t?).

2. See Your Followers/Following Activity

new-twitter-activity-followers

While Twitter claims that the Discover feature “lets you tap into a stream of useful and entertaining information, customized just for you,” I found that the Stories portion is a giant yawn. I’m not interested in that. I am, however, interested in who my friends and followers are now following. That’s incredibly useful information. To find that out, just go to Discover>Activity as seen in the image above.

3. Easy to Use Profile Interface

new-twitter-profile-interface

I love the new profile interface and how simple and clean the layout is. There is nothing earth-shattering about it, except that with the tendency for web app developers to go crazy over-complicating things, it’s refreshing to be able to do exactly what you want to do in 1 or 2 clicks. Change your account name? Check. Change your password? Check. Change your picture? Check. Done.

4. Post Tweets to Facebook with One Click

post-tweets-to-facebook

Another cool feature that perhaps some people may enjoy is the super easy way to posts your Tweets to Facebook. Just click the big button “Post Tweets to Facebook,” connect to Facebook, and you’re done. I don’t use this feature and because I’ve been under a big rock, this may have been there before. In that case, forgive my severe lateness!

Because I haven’t used it, I’m not sure what it looks like on Facebook’s end. If you do, please take a screenshot, send it to me, and I’ll update this post with it (and credit you of course).

5. Easily EMBED Tweets – Any Tweet – To Your Website or Blog

embed-tweets-on-your-website

Twitter has now provided a way to actually embed Tweets – fully-functional – into your website or blog. When you open a Tweet (so that you are viewing its unique URL), there is an option labeled “Embed this tweet.” Click on it, and you’ll see the window as in the image above. You can then embed the tweet. You can use the provided HTML, WordPress shortcode, or a link (which is not really embedding, but it’s an option in case for some reason you can’t find the URL in your web browser. hmm.)

This is what it looks like when embedded. Notice that the links are active and that you can reply, retweet, or favorite the tweet right from here. Pretty cool, especially if you want to encourage someone to retweet something (I can see this being very useful in contests and stuff).

What it does NOT do is actually embed the image, which is what it should do. Below is what the real thing looks like on Twitter, which I really like.

full-image-in-twitter

By the way, if you DO decide to use the HTML provided by Twitter in your WordPress post, and you have Genesis and the latest version of WordPress, you may have to do what I do, which is use only the HTML tab. If you switch back to Visual after inserting the javascript, the script itself may get stripped. It’s up to you, and there are plugins which are supposed to help that, but I manage just by using the HTML option rather than Visual.

Your Thoughts

What do you guys/ladies think of the new version of Twitter? Thumbs up, thumbs down?

Red Kathy February 26, 2012 at 9:31 pm

Totally thumbs up Tia! I’ve been enjoying the simple interface the most I think. Always hated those big learning curves that generally come with updates.

Tia Peterson February 23, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Agreed. Clean is the key.

blackberry developer February 23, 2012 at 2:59 am

I like the new version. It looks more up-to-date now and more advanced.

zacc February 22, 2012 at 6:33 pm

I haven’t recieved the new style yet, is it something you can request like you were able to do with the fb timeline? or do you just have to wait until they roll it out… Thanks!

Tia Peterson February 23, 2012 at 1:39 pm

@zacc Hey Zacc – Apparently, everyone has the new Twitter according to their blog. But if you don’t see any of the features, that might be an issue! Not sure about that one.

Marshall Davis February 21, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Hi Tia. Thanks for this! You actually forced me to look at all the new ‘features’ of the Twitter interface on my account as I was reading your article. I had a couple of “Oh, that is what that does” moments. Thanks!

Tia Peterson February 21, 2012 at 1:34 pm

@Marshall Davis Hi Marshall! I’m glad for that. Turns out I am not the only one surprised by the changes!

Marshall Davis February 21, 2012 at 1:36 pm

@Tia Peterson Now if I can just figure out how to add a few hours to the day so that I can actually read all the tweets. And I don’t follow that many people yet…

Tia Peterson February 23, 2012 at 1:39 pm

@Marshall Davis LOL I’m the worst Twitter friend so I can totally understand what you’re saying. I follow a lot of people but don’t have the time to really communicate with them or with my followers.

LauraC February 21, 2012 at 11:52 am

I’m obviously not a Twitter power user as I hadn’t noticed any changes but I’ve just checked and my initial reaction is that I like it. I like the embedded image, I wasn’t aware that you could do that with Twitter but it looks good.

Tia Peterson February 21, 2012 at 1:02 pm

@LauraC Hey Laura – I like the embedded tweet, but unfortunately the image doesn’t come with it. I wish it did!

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