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Twitter gets anti-'Social' in the App Store, bills itself as 'News'

​BBC, CNN, The New York Times, Twitter -- the social media service is quietly downplaying its "social networking" role and positioning itself as a "news" app on the App Store.

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Ole Spata/Corbis

Everyone's favourite 140-character micro-blogging platform is quietly setting off on a new course on the vast oceans of the Internet, changing classification in the app store from "Social Networking" to "News."

Rather than going up against the likes of Facebook, Skype and Facebook's spin-off app Messenger, the move sees Twitter playing in the big leagues with The New York Times, The Guardian and BBC News.

Just as rival social network Facebook has shifted focus in recent years, focusing heavily on video, advertising and delivering third-party news within its own ecosystem, Twitter is looking to reposition too.

The company is eyeing off the mass market, with Twitter this month winning rights to stream the NFL's Thursday night games and CEO Jack Dorsey committing to make Twitter "more Twitter-y" to win over new users.

The platform had zero growth in new users in the fourth quarter of 2015, but using a new tallying system, the company this week reported a 2 percent increase in active users in the first quarter of 2016.