Changes are coming

I have been noticing some UI changes in Twitter’s iOS app. As a power user, I think any experimentation is good. Twitter seems to be testing a lot of UI changes.

In any A/B test, there are two versions. Obviously. I think I was a part of both the versions somehow. The first version did not last for long. But, I had been experiencing the second version for a while.

It feels like the test is over now. I did take screenshots of few things I thought were interesting.

Here are some changes that stood out ->

Notice how it shows you a number next to the reply icon. That count stands for the number of people participating in the a thread. The rationale seems to nudge people to click through threads and read the replies. Ideally, a user would retweet or comment.

Twitter sucks at helping users discover new content. This move will probably nudge more and more people to stop scrolling and engage. Some might even take the count as a proxy for how interesting a conversation might be. If I see more people are responding to a tweet, I am more likely to stop and engage.

For a while, the handles weren’t counted in the 140 char limit when I responded to a tweet. I really hope this change gets shipped. It makes no sense to add more constraints to an already restrictive content format.

I have always wanted Twitter to implement a “subscribe to tweet” option that enables us to get updates on threads we are interested in. A lot of interesting content gets lost merely because some conversations hadn’t played out at the time we came across a tweet.

As of now, I either DM a tweet to myself or favorite it for bookmarking purposes. Twitter seems to be toying with ideas for such use case. It sends me a notification whenever a person replies to a tweet I liked. The feature was really half-assed. It worked randomly. But, I appreciate that they have started thinking in this direction.

I am truly hoping the new VP will turn the ship around. Long live Twitter!