Name That App: Twitter for BlackBerry

**As published in digiday:DAILY** Publisher: Research in Motion Limited Price: Free Platform: BlackBerry Advertising: None that we’ve come across yet Functionality: A Fun Factor: A Overall: A- After being a committed UberTwitter user for at least a year, I’m almost ready to move over to the official Twitter for BlackBerry app. But like so many other apps that have come out of Reasearch in Motion, Ltd (BlackBerry’s parent company), the just-launched app is late in the game, and still missing a few key features. First and foremost, the app only allows access for one account at a time. This is a feature that came late to UberTwitter as well, but it should be considered a must-have for every Twitter-centric app. I’m hopeful it will be added soon in an update, but I’m not holding my breath. Another great feature that’s missing from this app is the ability to start typing a user’s handle and automatically narrowing down by your following list who you intend to tweet. Anytime I can avoid drilling into a menu system to access what I’m after is a bonus. UberTwitter does this. The RIM Twitter app doesn’t.

The Twitter for BlackBerry app is definitely easier on the eyes, but that’s not saying much. The horizontal toolbar across the top of the app, which can be turned off, makes it easy to navigate between home, mentions, lists, profile, direct messages, search, popular topics and user search. In the options menu, the app is still light on customization features, particularly geolocation. Users are able to search for tweets nearby based on geolocation, but I haven’t found the option to include my location data within a tweet yet. The Twitter for BlackBerry client does, however, include other modern features such as photo sharing and lists integration. The real power of this app, and the reason it had the potential to become my main Twitter client, is its speed. I downloaded the beta app as soon as the BlackBerry-maker made it publicly available, and it was noticeably faster at retrieving tweets – so much so that I find myself able to read more of my feed with less effort. Scrolling through hundreds of tweets is a breeze on this app, while other competing apps for the BlackBerry platform will get bogged down in my experience. I haven’t yet noticed any advertising on the application, but I’m sure that’s coming soon. While the app is still missing some features that some BlackBerry users will miss, especially if they’ve grown accustomed to UberTwitter’s capabilities, the benefit of speed is impossible to pass up when Twitter is the name of the game. I assume RIM and Twitter will work on adding the most glaringly missing features to the app in future upgrades or when it comes out of beta, but in the meantime I’ll have to rely on other apps to get the job done where Twitter for BlackBerry falls short.

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