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Best Twitter apps for Android

There's no shortage of Twitter clients for the Android platform, so we thought it was time to sort the wheat from the chaff and present you with our five favourites.

Twitter and Android is a coupling so perfect that you can almost imagine the offspring: little greenish-blue robotic birds, happily tweeting away about how much they hate Apple and Nokia. Indeed, there's no shortage of Twitter clients for the platform, although some are markedly better than others. Since we like to sort the wheat from the chaff so that you don't have to, here are five of our favourites.

Twitter

Twitter's home-grown client may have some stiff competition -- just take a look below -- but it's still worth having on your roster of apps. That's partly because it's free and partly because it's polished, fast and easy to use.

The home page is minimalist, with large icons for the client's eight main functions, including viewing your latest tweets. The app isn't without its flaws -- it's not very customisable, for example -- but it's extremely accessible. The option to compose a new post, for example, is available via a shortcut in the top right-hand corner of every screen, so you'll never find yourself having to keep bashing the back button if you decide you want to tweet your mind.
Cost: Free.
Score: 3.5

TweetCaster Pro for Android

At first, TweetCaster looks like it has a slightly messier layout than most of its rivals, but it's actually very easy to get used to. And, if you cough up for the Pro version, you'll find that getting rid of the ads tidies everything up slightly. TweetCaster has plenty to offer. URL shrinkage is readily available and it's easy to post photos and videos from your phone.

Most usefully, retweets in your timeline display the avatar of the retweeter over the top of the original author's one, so it's easy to see who's filling your feed full of useless, juvenile rubbish.
Cost: £3.20 (free version available).
Score: 4

Twicca

Still technically in beta, but 100 per cent stable, fully functional and -- best of all -- completely free, Twicca is a fast, stylish Android Twitter client.

All the features you might expect from a paid-for app are available in Twicca for nothing, in a refreshingly ad-free format. Both old- and new-style retweeting are supported, as is URL shortening in your own tweets. Notifications, profile editing and landscape mode can also be ticked off the wish list. One simple, yet surprisingly useful, feature is the option to set a colour label for certain people or groups of users that you're following. That provides a quick way of browsing relevant posts in your timeline.
Cost: Free.
Score: 4.5 

Touiteur

If you're wondering about Touiteur's name, it's meant to sound like 'Twitter' pronounced in a French accent. Gallic pronunciation aside, Touiteur has come to be one of the most popular clients for Android phones and it's not hard to see why.

Notifications, link shrinking and everything else you might want is present. But the biggest bonus is its interface. Not only is it highly intuitive, it's also extremely customisable, offering tonnes of options, including various font sizes, colour coding and more.

The paid-for version is comparatively cheap and well worth coughing up for. It comes with multiple-account support, view filtering, integrated picture and Web browsing, and even more interface customisation options. 
Cost: £1.68 (free version available).
Score: 4

Winner: Twidroyd Pro

Twidroyd used to be known as Twidroid until TweetUp bought up the client earlier this year. Confused? Well, you won't have to worry about being bewildered by the interface, which is easy to navigate, clean and well laid out.

Like many Twitter apps, Twidroyd Pro offers a useful widget for your home page -- three differently sized ones, in fact. There are tonnes of integrated features but probably the coolest thing about Twidroyd is LivePreview. Turn your phone on its side and you get a landscape view of your Twitter timeline, with your tweets on the left and a preview of any links, photos and videos on the right.
Cost: £2.56 (free version available).
Score: 4.5