A few months ago Twitter ruined the native iOS application. It was a sad day, as the official app was once known as Tweetie and was an app many iOS apps looked to as an example of great design. (Loren Brichter, the developer of Tweetie, introduced the "pull to refresh" concept used by numerous applications in his initial release.)
At that point I switched to Tweetbot ($3), and have been very happy with it on the iPhone. Well, today tapbots (the developer) released version 2.0. At first I was a bit nervous after my experience with the official client, but my fear was unfounded. The app is even more usable than before.
The official Tweetbot 2.0 blog post indicates a few new features:
- Updated timeline view
- Image thumbnails in timeline
- Links now colored and single-tappable
- “Retweeted by” bar now integrated and tappable
- Cell colors adjusted for better contrast
- New direct message view.
- Redesigned “New Tweets” bar (Can be dismissed by tap and configured in Settings > Display)
- Timed auto-refresh (timeline, mentions, and DM’s will refresh every 5 minutes)
- Readability added as mobilizer service
- Much improved tweet replies view
- Links in user’s bio now tappable
- “Huge” font size option in Settings > Display
- Improved scrolling performance
The inline image thumbnails make a much bigger difference than I would have thought. Meanwhile many smaller tweaks like presentation of @ mentions and a new tweets counter at the top of the timeline add little hints of additional usability in areas I didn't realize were lacking. Tweetbot didn't need to get any better, but it did anyway.
The even bigger announcement today was Tweetbot for iPad. It looks like a great conversion of a great app. While I appreciated the official Twitter app launch release for iPad when it originally came out, it was plagued with many small usability issues that became magnified the longer the app went without any improvements to areas in which it has clearly been lacking. I easily made the decision to buy Tweetbot for iPad for $3 and deleted the official app before my new client even finished downloading.
An added bonus is that using Tweetbot on both devices allows me to finally use the Tweet Marker service to synchronize my position in my timeline and @ mentions.
With all this said, I'm still perfectly happy with the official Twitter app for OS X--aside from my desire to see it use Tweet Marker as well. If I could get a client essentially identical to Twitter for OS X with Tweet Marker added, I'd be golden.