Twitter is one of the most popular social networks along with microblogging service. But it has not gained the entire popularity due to its own website but due to the huge number of apps and clients supported to make the user experience and usage better while twittering.
The web interface of twitter at twitter.com is still the most popular and highest used ones to tweet. And it would have been more popular and wanted one(there are many iTweet users which is the better web alternative) only if twitter team could make it more user friendly and had many changes which the alternatives have, some of which I can state below are -
Retweet button – There was a buzz about it some time back, where some users noticed the RT button beside the tweet which came for experimentation and just vanished. No signs of that again. Should we always copy and paste the tweet, add the RT @username in the prefix to retweet the tweet from the web interface?
Built-in URL shortener – Tr.im was going to shut down once, and tinyurl, bit.ly sometimes go down due to hosting outage or some other reason. When the URLs were shared with their shortened systems, the shortening site being down would just not allow you to proceed to the actual site until the URL is expanded. If twitter had their own built-in URL shortener, the problem can be solved. If twitter is down, the shortened URLs are too, but no problem!
Highlight replies with colors – I see this with dabr.co.uk and also with iTweet, where the reply to you shows color in the background that stands out from the normal tweets. When on the twitter web client, all the tweets including the mentions to me are the same with no difference and sometimes i miss the replies unless i go to the replies section to check for any!
Hover over username should show brief profile stats – This is just to make users not load the entire profile page of someone if they want to briefly see who the user is, if they don’t remember. The inspiration can be taken from iTweet where a click on the digital picture of the user gives a brief data of the user, and also a link to DM them.
Non-ajax based lite version, for slow internet connection users – Twitter has a page where you don’t need to reload it to check the replies and DMs, as the page is AJAX based and it can refresh or take u to the inner pages without a reload. But it always isn’t advantageous. For ex. when you are running on a slow internet connection, a lighter version is what you ask for, because the AJAX-based pages don’t work well there.
Threaded tweet discussions – If, and only if twitter thinks that people can make long-time discussions in there, then a threaded tweet discussion would be awesome. Like 2 users replying to each other simultaneously, and if they need to check the whole conversation, a page showing the conversation would be a great addition.
Recommendation engine for following people – When someone joins twitter, they are given a small list of people to follow, most of which are useless and not worth following. Twitter should better have a recommendation engine kind of suggestion tool to suggest people to follow. MrTweet is an external site which helps in recommending people wisely, and twitter can do the same based on the tags a new user searches and matching them with members who frequently use them.
Twitpic preview in the site itself – This gives a brief idea of whether the twitpic posted by the member is worth expanding and viewing in a new window. A small 150×150 pixel preview of the twitpic image would be great enough.
Notification indicator for new unread DM – A small notification icon for a new DM arrival in the inbox is a must needed feature. We mostly miss checking the DM’s when browsing through the web interface and we don’t have the email inbox open to notify about it. A pop-up icon near the DM counter would be a great addition.
These were all the features that i would have enjoyed seeing on the web interface. But that’s not it. The mobile web site of twitter is the worst i have seen. There are some good alternatives like Mobile tweete, dabr, slandr etc. but a few improvements to the main mobile web site of twitter would also be cool. A few needed features in m.twitter.com are -
- Ability to read/send DM
- Retweet button
- Small images in avatars to make it attractive
- Reply button