Twitter on the Pre
I delve into the use of Twitter with a pair of apps.
There are a pair of twitter applications in the App Catalog already for the Palm Pre. Tweed is the more popular of the two with 81,431 download and a four star rating at the time of writing. Spaz is the other with 25,314 downloads and a three star rating. In an effort to compare the two and also to investigate the overall ability of the Pre to integrate with Twitter, I took both for a test drive.
Up first is Tweed. The default page shows a standard Twitter-style home page. You then have the option to change to trending topics, favorites, direct messages, replies, just your own tweets, bookmarks or the public time line. It is a bevy of options and should provide all that your heart could desire in terms of selection criteria of tweets.
For uploading photos, you have a choice of TweetPhoto, TwitPic or yFrog. You can even pass on your current location as a tinyurl via the Pre's GPS capability. Pretty nifty.
Moving over to Spaz, it looks very functionally similar. Of course that is to be expected because the whole concept of Twitter is simple to the point of almost mandating similar approaches to rendering it on a mobile. One major difference that I did spot is that while Tweed stood static by default, Spaz seemed to poll my Twitter page on an interval, even when the application was simply running in the background. When it detected new tweets, Spaz would throw up a notification balloon. Tweed would also do that, but you had to opt in to it. That was really neat and though I could see that getting annoying after a while, the easy fix is to just close the application if it bothers you.
For posting tweets, Spaz offers the same photo uploading services as Tweed, with the addition of twitgoo. It also has a shorten text button that will automatically go in and utilize contractions and some standard chat speak conventions to trim the size of your message should you be over the 140 character limit.
Both services have their positives and negatives. In the end, I prefer Tweed for its better options in posting tweets.