Twitter has shown us numerous times in the past that it has no problem angering third-party developers — and in turn, users — with restrictions as it continues its effort to increase revenue. Now, with news that the company will soon go public, questions now must be raised about the future of third-party Twitter clients as a whole. The company made some big changes to its API last year that caused a panic across tech blogs and even some mainstream media. By capping the number of users a Twitter app could support without first getting permission from Twitter, users and developers worried that Twitter was waging war on third-party apps. While that panic ended up being somewhat overblown, we may now be on a road to ruin that will change the third-party Twitter app landscape forever. More →
Facebook has discovered that pushing ads aggressively on its users works well, even if people complain about the strategy. After Twitter goes public, it will face intense pressure to match Facebook’s phenomenal recent ad revenue growth. In the autumn of 2012, it seemed as though Facebook’s star-crossed IPO was going to ice Twitter’s plans to go public for years to come. Facebook’s share price plunged by 50% following its listing in May 2012. But over the past two months, Facebook’s strong Q2 ad revenue growth has driven investors wild — Facebook’s share price has rocketed from $22 to $45 since early July. This may well have lured Twitter into pulling the trigger on its own IPO plans now that sentiment surrounding the mobile ad market is so optimistic. More →
Twitter on Thursday announced that it has filed documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an Initial Public Offering, or IPO. “We’ve confidentially submitted an S-1 to the SEC for a planned IPO,” Twitter said in a post on its popular social networking site. “This Tweet does not constitute an offer of any securities for sale.” Twitter is able to file its S-1 confidentially because its annual revenue is less than $1 billion, and the document will remain confidential until three weeks prior to the offering as a result. More →
Noted industry analyst and former consultant to major labels Bob Lefsetz is best known for his thoughts on the music industry, but he dabbles in other areas from time to time including social networking. The analyst recently noted that Facebook appears to be losing its appeal among younger users, which could certainly be a big problem over time, and now Lefsetz has set his sights on Twitter, which he says will soon be a thing of the past. More →
The impact of Instagram’s new video product on Vine was felt almost immediately, but a new report paints a far scarier picture of Vine’s decline now that Instagram is looking to eat its lunch. Using Topsy’s analytics tool, Marketing Land ran a quick analysis of links to Instagram and links to Vine posted on Twitter during the 30-day period ending on June 26th. The results are pretty staggering, and quite disconcerting for the Twitter-owned Vine app. According to Topsy, Vine videos shared on Twitter sat at about 2.5 million on June 19th, the day before Facebook added video-sharing to Instagram. That figure plummeted 40% on June 20th as video rolled out to Instagram users, and it continued declining to just 919,000 on June 26th. Meanwhile, a total of 1.49 million Instagram videos and images were shared on June 26th, according to Topsy’s data.
Twitter on Monday announced the availability of Vine for Android smartphones. Vine is a simple video-sharing app that allows users to record six-second videos with audio and share them with friends on the Vine network and also on Twitter. The app launched back in January for Apple’s iPhone, and Twitter said it would release an Android version at a later point in time. The Android app is now finally available according to a post on Twitter’s blog, and it includes all of the functionality included in the iOS version. Vine for Android can be downloaded for free from the Google Play app store.
When you’re a tween or teen who just has to repost that great porn GIF you just found, Facebook really isn’t the place to do it. It’s not that porn GIFs are any less appreciated by Facebook users, of course, but rather that young users are often tracked by their parents on the world’s top social network. As a result, a recent Pew Research study found that teenagers are moving away from Facebook and finding a new home on Tumblr. More →
It is difficult for big tech companies to create hot apps. Very difficult. A few months ago, Nokia’s mapping app called HERE created a big media splash when it launched, becoming a top-5 iPhone app the day after it debuted. It then tumbled out of top-100 in just six days. Twitter’s much-hyped music app annoyingly titled “Twitter #music” managed to cling onto a top-100 position 96 hours longer — it dropped out on its tenth day. More →
Apple’s artist-driven music network “Ping” was basically dead on arrival, but Twitter thinks it has what it takes to make a successful social music service. The company on Thursday unveiled Twitter Music, the worst-kept secret in social networking. The service helps users discover music based on what their friends are listening to, along with recommendations from popular artists. “It uses Twitter activity, including Tweets and engagement, to detect and surface the most popular tracks and emerging artists,” Twitter said in a blog post. “It also brings artists’ music-related Twitter activity front and center: go to their profiles to see which music artists they follow and listen to songs by those artists. And, of course, you can tweet songs right from the app.” Twitter Music will be available on the web and on Apple’s iPhone at launch, but Twitter plans to expand it to other platforms moving forward.
WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum has been talking at the D: Dive Into Mobile conference and he revealed some numbers about the company’s performance. The figures are certainly impressive: more than 200 million users and 12 billion outbound messages per day. In terms of active users, WhatsApp is now bigger than Twitter. Yet the company hit 11 billion outbound messages per day on New Year’s Eve, 2012. In August 2012, WhatsApp announced it was handling 6 billion outbound messages a day. Is the service’s messaging volume growth really decelerating this rapidly? From 6 billion outbound in August, to 11 billion in December, and then to 12 billion in April 2013. These are terrific volumes and they make WhatsApp one of the most fascinating and valuable app companies in the world… but its growth rate now seems to be falling quickly. More →
Everyone seems to following be Pandora into the music discovery business these days and Twitter has decided getting into the game by releasing its own music app on Friday. There’s just one catch, however: As AllThingsD writes, Twitter is only making the app accessible to select “influencers” such as Ryan Seacrest before making it available to the non-famous portion of the public. The music app apparently “suggests artists and tracks to users based on a number of personalized signals, including the Twitter accounts a user follows on the microblogging service” and will let users “listen to clips of music from inside the app, using third-party services like iTunes and SoundCloud.” AllThingsD says that the music app will likely be released for all users some time next week.
Twitter on Thursday unveiled a new mobile video-sharing app called Vine. The app is already available for the iPhone and it allows Twitter users to capture short videos that can then be embedded directly into tweets on Twitter’s website. The videos appear directly beneath the text of a tweet in users’ timelines and they begin playing automatically when a tweet is expanded. Vine is available immediately for free on the iPhone — it can be downloaded here — and Twitter said it is working to bring the app to other mobile platforms soon.
It was only nine months ago that Twitter announced it had reached 140 million monthly active users serving a total of 340 million tweets per day. But on Tuesday, the social network announced via a tweet on its official account that “There are now more than 200M monthly active @twitter users. You are the pulse of the planet. We’re grateful for your ongoing support!” In recent years, Twitter has played a major role from breaking news to helping rally voters for presidential campaigns. Tweeting is now as common as sending a text message or making a phone call and as the company continues its push to become a media company with photos and videos, its importance as a means of communication will continue to grow and evolve.