New Twitter iPad App And Profiles Show Growing Focus On Media
Twitter has been hailed as a revolutionary social communication service. But the company has been retooling itself through its Website and apps to put greater emphasis not just on how people participate, but how they consume tweets. In particular, tweets with links, photos, videos and other types of media.
Today, the company unveiled its new iPad app that moves the company even further toward focusing on media consumption:
“Expand Tweets with a single touch to see beautiful photos, rich videos and web page summaries right in your timeline. Dive into the content with another tap to see the photo, play the video or read links from the web in fullscreen mode.”
“Tap into a stream of useful and entertaining information personalized for you. Read news stories that are popular within your network, see which Tweets and accounts are favorited and followed by the people you know, see what topics are trending, and find great new accounts to follow.”
Same is true for Twitter’s new, expanded profiles, also announced today. While not an exact copy, the new profile page mirrors changes Facebook made with Timeline. In particular, the ability to add a much larger photo at the top to personalize, or brand, the page more distinctively:
As Twitter describes the new profiles:
“Starting today you can make your presence on Twitter more meaningful with new Twitter profiles. Upload an all-new header photo on mobile apps for iPad, iPhone and Android or twitter.com, and the same image will appear whenever anyone views your profile on the web or these apps. You can upload your header photo, which appears above your Tweets, to express yourself instantly, anywhere.”
And who do they use to demonstrate the changes? Why, a media brand, of course:
“Get started by taking a look at the first new profiles from the @TODAYshow, TODAY anchors like @MLauer, @SavannahGuthrie and @AlRoker, this morning’s TODAY guest anchor @RyanSeacrest and NBC news accounts like @BreakingNews.”
This will no doubt rankle some. But again, part of this is the painful transition of people coming to grips with the fact that Twitter is a business, as I wrote a couple of weeks ago. While the company won’t say it up front, the growing emphasis on design will make it a stronger, more consistent media consumption platform.
And that, in turn, will make it more appealing to advertisers. In the end, the ability to make that leap will determine if Twitter morphs into a sustainable business, or whether it ends up a division of Google.