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Twitter for iOS Gains Support for Peek and Pop 3D Touch Gestures

The official Twitter app for iOS was today updated to version 6.54, quietly adding expanded 3D Touch support. As noticed by MacStories, the update enables Peek and Pop gestures within the Twitter app itself, allowing Twitter uses with an iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus to preview content through a "Peek" and then quickly open it up with a "Pop." Peek and Pop gestures are available for previewing tweets, pictures, links, and user profiles, and with a swipe up on a Peek gesture, there are quick tools for sharing, reporting, muting, and blocking. Twitter previously featured 3D Touch support, but it was limited to Home screen Quick Actions, allowing users to do things like search, create a new tweet, or send a direct message. Twitter can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Twitter to Drop Handles and Media Attachments From 140-Character Limit

Twitter announced today that it will be making a number of expected changes to simplify tweets over the coming months. First and foremost, when replying to a tweet, Twitter handles such as @MacRumors will no longer count toward the 140-character limit. Media attachments, like photos, GIFs, videos, polls, and Quote Tweets, will also no longer be counted. The changes should provide Twitter users, including brands and websites, with more characters for actual text and article headlines. Meanwhile, new non-reply tweets that begin with a username will now reach all of a user's followers, eliminating the need to use the ".@" convention to broadcast a tweet widely. Last, Twitter users will be able to Retweet and Quote Tweet their own tweets. Twitter expects the changes to have a significant impact on tweets, so the microblogging service aims to provide its developer partners with time to make any needed updates to products built using the Twitter API.

Tweetbot for Mac Updated With 'Topics' Feature for Linking Multiple Related Tweets

Earlier this month, Tweetbot for iOS was updated with a new "Topics" feature designed to link multiple related tweets together in a cohesive way, and now the Tweetbot app for Mac has been updated with the same feature. Topics are built around the Twitter feature that links conversations. Tweets composed as a topic in Tweetbot are linked together via Twitter's conversation threading mechanism and use the same hashtag, so "Tweetstorms" or tweets surrounding a single topic connected. Linking multiple tweets together is often desirable in situations where a single tweet doesn't suffice, such as a lengthy rant or live event coverage.This release introduces Topics. A Topic is a way to let you quickly Tweet a group of related Tweets without having to manually reply to yourself and/or manually add the same hashtags over and over again. They are really great for rapid fire live Tweeting events. You can access Topics by tapping the gear menu in the New Tweet screen. They are also stored in and require iCloud, so you can start a topic on your iPhone and easily continue it on your iPad and Mac.Today's Tweetbot update also includes support for Collections, a way to save tweets linked together as a topic, and there are a number of feature improvements and bug fixes.- Collections Support - Improved Quote Preview in Compose Window - Removed play/pause button from video playback. Clicking on the video will toggle play/pause. - Fixed an issue where incoming DM's would play a sound even when notification center was set to 'Do not Disturb'. - If you mute someone you don't

Twitter Plans to Stop Counting Links and Photos in 140-Character Limit

Twitter has plans to stop counting photos and links within the 140-character limit allowed for each tweet, reports Bloomberg. Removing photos and links from tweets will allow tweets with media to contain more text. At the current time, photos take up 24 characters and links take up 23 characters, eliminating 47 available characters when both are included in a tweet. Twitter is reportedly introducing the change to give Twitter users "more flexibility" after exploring methods that would allow users to include more text in tweets. Twitter has made efforts to give users additional characters to work with in the past, implementing tweet quoting features, using link shorteners, and removing character limits from Direct Messages. Twitter has included a 140-character restriction since it launched in 2006, put in place to stay within the limits of the standard 160-character length of SMS messages with 20 characters left as space for a username. Reports in January suggested Twitter was considering eliminating the 140-character limit and allowing tweets to contain up to 10,000 characters as part of a project it called "Beyond 140," but Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey later said the character limit would not be changed. Twitter is expected to implement the change in the next two

Twitter for Mac Gains Support for Moments and Polls

Twitter today updated its dedicated Mac app with support for several Twitter features that have previously been available to Twitter users on iOS and the web, including Moments and Polls. Introduced in October, Moments is a new Twitter tab that's designed to help users discover popular news stories, events, and trending topics, aggregating interesting content into categories like News, Sports, Entertainment, and Fun. The ability to create custom polls embedded within Tweets was also added in a separate October update, allowing Twitter users to query their followers through multiple choice 24-hour polls. Along with support for Moments and Polls, Twitter for Mac users can now share GIFs in tweets and Direct Messages through a new GIF search feature.What's New - Find the best of Twitter in an instant with Moments. Follow top stories through immersive pics, clips, and conversations. Get insights and perspectives you won't find anywhere else. - Create polls on Twitter and with just a couple of taps, people can weigh in on all the topics they care about. - Sharing GIFs in Tweets and Direct Messages is even easier with our new GIF search.Today's Twitter for Mac update comes five months after a major app overhaul that was introduced in December. The Twitter for Mac 4.0 update introduced a slew of features like inline video playback, group direct messages, mute, a dark theme, and Notification Center widget. Twitter for Mac can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Twitter Launches 'Connect Tab' on iOS and Android to Curate Recommended Accounts

Twitter today announced a new feature for its iOS and Android applications that will connect people to Twitter users around the world who share similar interests. Using the new "Connect tab," users will be able to browse a list of people and accounts that the social network believes you will be interested in, all without having to manually search topics and hashtags yourself. Finding new accounts to follow used to require jumping through a few hoops and a dash of luck. That’s why we’ve reimagined the experience with our new Connect tab. Starting today, you’ll see a detailed list of people and accounts we think you’ll enjoy following, all easily accessible in one place. To curate the best selections in the Connect tab, the company said it uses the people you already follow, liked tweets, popular local Twitter accounts, and current world and entertainment events. It also assured users that it will "let you know exactly why we’re showing you each recommendation," to avoid any confusion. Beyond random accounts, the Connect tab will serve as an easier way to find friends and family members with the option to sync a smartphone's address book to find pre-existing Twitter users, and give you a heads up if a contact in the address book joins Twitter. The company said the new Connect tab is rolling out to everyone using Twitter for iOS and Android beginning today, but didn't mention the possible addition of the new feature to its desktop site. Twitter for iOS can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link

Twitter Moves to 'News' Category in App Store to Boost Visibility

Twitter yesterday changed how its iOS mobile app is categorized on the App Store in order to enhance its visibility, following the company's poor Q1 earnings report earlier this week (via TechCrunch). Twitter now appears in the "News" category, where it's the #1 ranked app ahead of CNN and Reddit. Previously it could be found in "Social Networking", where it occupied #5 in the category rankings, behind the likes of Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp. Achieving a #1 ranking in the App Store should also give Twitter's "Overall" ranking a boost, which equates to better visibility in the top "Free" apps chart, where Twitter currently sits at #28. The company has not commented on the thematic switch, which has yet to be reflected in the Google Play store (where it still sits in the "Social" category), but the change indicates that Twitter is looking to court a new audience interested in sources of breaking news and curated information on current affairs, as it seeks a strategy that will heighten its online profile and significantly boost growth. Twitter's Q1 earnings earlier this week showed poor performance, with $595 million company revenues falling short of the $607.8 million analysts expected. The platform had zero growth in new users in Q4 of 2015, but a new tallying system enabled the company to report a 2 percent increase in active users in Q1 (310 million, up from 305 million users in Q4). The company remains unprofitable, with a Q1 net loss of -$79.7 million, and gave bleak guidance for the quarter ahead. Twitter has attempted to improve its

Twitter for iOS Gains Message Button to Make it Easier to Share Tweets Privately

Twitter today announced the addition of a new "Message" button to the Twitter apps for iOS and Android, giving users a simpler method for sharing tweets through Direct Messages to start private conversations. Sending a tweet to a user through a Direct Message is a feature that was originally implemented in 2014, but using the feature required long pressing on a tweet in the timeline and choosing the correct option, a method that wasn't intuitive, especially to new users. Today's change will add a Message button directly adjacent to the standard Reply, Retweet, and Like buttons, making it more accessible.Every day, millions of people send Direct Messages to communicate privately with friends, family, experts, brands, and anyone else they find interesting on Twitter. In fact, we've seen the number of messages sent grow over 60% in 2015. And the number of Tweets shared privately has grown even faster, at 200% in just the second half of last year. With all this interest, we've also heard from many of you that it could be easier to share a Tweet using Direct Message. So now -- in just a few taps -- you can share unique Twitter content from your timeline right into your private conversation.Twitter plans to make the Message button available through an update that will be released later today. The Twitter app for iOS can be downloaded through the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Apple Support Has Responded to Nearly 100 Tweets Per Hour So Far

Apple's new support account on Twitter has quickly gained momentum after launching on Thursday morning, surpassing 125,000 followers in just over 24 hours. The account has over 2,750 tweets as of writing, meaning that Apple's support team has responded to nearly 100 customer tweets per hour so far. Keyhole, a real-time social media analytics website, provides a closer look at the Apple Support account. The data shows that the account, and related tweets, have already generated over 124 million impressions, with 44.6% of users viewing the tweets from an iPhone. 77% of the account's followers are male. Apple joins a growing number of companies, ranging from retailers to banks, that provide customer service on Twitter in 140 characters or less. A customer can send a tweet to @AppleSupport, and an Apple Advisor will typically reply with a generic message that requests the user send more details via Direct Message. We’re always looking for new ways to help you get the most from  products. Meet @AppleSupport! https://t.co/YhdvY44PPS— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) March 3, 2016 The account will respond to customer inquiries every day between 5 a.m. and 8 p.m. Pacific, and it will also share tips, tricks, and tutorials related to Apple products and services. Apple support continues to be available on the web, or by phone, email, or scheduling a Genius Bar

Apple Launches Support Account on Twitter With Tips, Tricks, and Customer Service

Apple today created an official Twitter support account to provide customers with tips, tricks, and customer service regarding the company's product and services. One of the account's first tweets shares step-by-step instructions on how to turn lists into checklists in the stock Notes app on iPhone. Many large companies provide customer service on Twitter in 140 characters or less, and it appears that Apple will directly respond to customer tweets as well. The account is currently set to accept Direct Messages, although Apple may choose to disable that option akin to some of its other Twitter accounts. Apple continues to lack an official company presence on the popular microblogging service, although it does have some Twitter accounts for specific products and services like the App Store, Apple Music, iTunes, and Beats 1. Tim Cook, Phil Schiller, Eddy Cue, and many other executives also have personal accounts. The Notes app has some awesome hidden tricks. A favorite of ours: how to turn lists into checklists. #AppleSupport pic.twitter.com/6fdzsRT1i4— Apple Support (@AppleSupport) March 3, 2016 @ItsZijZ We're here to help! Can you please send us a DM with the details of your issue? Thanks.— Apple Support (@AppleSupport) March 3, 2016 Follow the account on Twitter at @AppleSupport. You can also follow MacRumors at @MacRumors.

Facebook and Twitter Announce Support for Apple in Backdoor Dispute With FBI

Both Facebook and Twitter today joined the ranks of a growing number of tech companies announcing support for Apple's decision to oppose a government order that would require it to weaken the security of its iOS devices. The FBI is demanding Apple create a version of iOS that would let it crack the passcode on the iPhone 5c used by San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook, something Apple has called a "dangerous precedent." In a tweet shared this afternoon, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey thanked Tim Cook for his leadership and said the company stands with Apple. In the tweet, Dorsey also links to Cook's strongly worded open letter that calls the FBI's software request "too dangerous to create." We stand with @tim_cook and Apple (and thank him for his leadership)! https://t.co/XrnGC9seZ4— Jack (@jack) February 18, 2016 Facebook announced its support through a statement shared with USA Today, which says the company will "fight aggressively" against government requirements to weaken security. Facebook says the FBI's demands "would create a chilling precedent.""We condemn terrorism and have total solidarity with victims of terror. Those who seek to praise, promote, or plan terrorist acts have no place on our services. We also appreciate the difficult and essential work of law enforcement to keep people safe," the statement reads. "When we receive lawful requests from these authorities we comply. However, we will continue to fight aggressively against requirements for companies to weaken the security of their systems. These demands would create a chilling precedent and obstruct

Apple Fixes Broken Twitter Links in Safari in Third Beta of OS X 10.11.4

Apple has fixed an issue that prevented shortened "t.co" links on Twitter from loading in Safari on the third beta version of OS X 10.11.4, seeded to developers for testing on Monday, according to developer Dieter Komendera. The bug affected many users in the MacRumors and Apple Support Communities forums. Apple just sent back my radar about https://t.co/JewBctgsV7 urls not working in Safari, saying it’s fixed in latest 10.11.4 beta. #finally— Dieter Komendera (@kommen) February 10, 2016 Since November, Twitter users who click shortened "t.co" links with the secured HTTPS protocol have encountered a bug that prevents content from loading. Oftentimes, when a "t.co" link is clicked, it opens up a blank web page and hangs at a loading screen for several minutes before giving an error message. Safari users have used temporary solutions, including reloading the "t.co" link several times, removing "https" from the URL, clearing Safari's cache, or switching to a different browser, but until now there was no official fix yet for the link loading issue. Chrome and Firefox are not affected, nor are links that do not use HTTPS. Last month, WebKit Developer Experience Manager Timothy Hatcher tweeted that the problem was lower level than WebKit, Safari's underlying rendering engine, and that Apple had a fix identified. OS X 10.11.4 should be released to the public by no later than the end of March, depending on how many beta versions are

Twitter Experimenting With Dedicated GIF Button for Mobile Apps [Updated]

A few Twitter users on the social network's Android app have begun to notice a dedicated GIF button within the Tweet composition box of the mobile client. Speaking with TechCrunch, Twitter user Phil Pearlman said that the new button lets users browse through current popular GIFs in a trending tab, or select a mood they're feeling to see resulting GIFs based on that emotion. So far the GIF button appears to only be showing up on Android, but if Twitter is planning a wide rollout, it should presumably come to iOS as well. If people aren't seeing it yet twttr is testing way cool gif feature. cc @bluechoochoo pic.twitter.com/LuTsVeUiSs— Phil Pearlman (@ppearlman) February 4, 2016 Pearlman wasn't the only Twitter user to see the GIF button appear within the Android app, with quite a few people mentioning it over the past day. It's also been disappearing for just as many who got to briefly test the feature out, with a couple users -- including Pearlman -- noticing the button suddenly disappearing from the app. Besides a playful GIF of its own, Twitter didn't respond to comment on the possible large-scale rollout of a GIF button feature for the service's mobile app. Given that many users already go through the laborious process of searching for GIFs online and inserting them into tweets through the Media option, it makes sense for the company to begin streamlining that process. Update 2/17: Twitter has confirmed that "GIF Search" is officially coming to iOS, Android, and Twitter.com users "over the coming

Twitter Close to Hiring Former Apple PR Director Natalie Kerris

Apple's longtime public relations executive Natalie Kerris, who retired last April after 14 years at the company, is the leading candidate for Twitter's head of communications, according to Re/code. Kerris initially sought to succeed longtime Apple PR head Katie Cotton, who retired in 2014, but fellow Apple PR veteran Steve Dowling was named as Cotton's permanent successor last April. Kerris previously said that her decision to retire and "enjoy life" came after spending two weeks with her family in Italy, but it appears she may put those plans on hold in joining Twitter.Instead, she has recently spent a lot of time talking to top Twitter execs and is the leading candidate for the job. If hired, Kerris will report to general counsel Vijaya Gadde and not, interestingly, to newly named CMO Leslie Berland. Gadde conducted the search, which has been taking place for months.Kerris was Senior Director of Worldwide Corporate Communications at Apple, where she served in public relations and communications roles since 2001. Kerris worked closely with the late Steve Jobs and oversaw the launch of the iPod, iPhone, iPad, MacBook Air and, more recently, Apple Pay and Apple Watch. Kerris would replace Gabriel Stricker, who left Twitter to lead Google Fiber

Apple Planning Fix for Broken Twitter Links in Safari on OS X

For the past couple of months, Twitter users who click shortened "t.co" links with an HTTPS URL have noticed a frequent, irritating bug that prevents content from loading. Oftentimes, when a "t.co" link is clicked, it opens up a blank web page and hangs at a loading screen for several minutes before giving an error message. There are threads about this issue on the MacRumors forums and the Apple Support Communities, with most people complaining that the problem started around the beginning of November. Aside from reloading the t.co URL several times, removing the "https" from the URL, or switching to a different browser, there's no way to fix the link loading issue. Clearing Safari's cached files also helps, but only temporarily. Chrome and Firefox aren't affected, nor are links that do not use HTTPS. In a recent post on the issue, The Verge uncovered a January 14 tweet from Timothy Hatcher, a WebKit Developer Experience Manager at Apple. Hatcher says the problem is lower level than WebKit (Safari is built on WebKit) and that Apple has a fix identified. Hatcher did not specify when the fix might be implemented, and it is unclear if it could come in a standalone Safari update or if a full OS X update will be

Twitter Considers Boosting Tweet Length Limits as High as 10,000 Characters

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey last night hinted at an incoming change to the 140-character limit for which the social network has been known over the past decade. Dorsey mentioned that the limit has "become a beautiful constraint" over the years, but the company is aware of certain workarounds its fans are going through to break away from the rule. He points towards a possibility in the near future for the site to support full-bodied text tweets that are searchable and can be highlighted by users without a strict 140-character restriction. Back in August, Twitter removed the same limit from its private messaging system, and a month later new rumors about the possibility for the same move for traditional tweets began circling. "At its core Twitter is public messaging. A simple way to say something, to anyone, that everyone in the world can see instantly. We've spent a lot of time observing what people are doing on Twitter, and we see them taking screenshots of text and tweeting it. Instead, what if that text...was actually text? Text that could be searched. Text that could be highlighted. That's more utility and power. What makes Twitter, Twitter is its fast, public, live conversational nature. We will always work to to strengthen that. And by focusing on conversation and messaging, the majority of tweets will always be short and sweet and conversational!" According to people familiar with Twitter's plans, speaking with Re/code, the project is referred to as "Beyond 140" and has a tentative launch window around the end of Q1 2016. Numbers that have been considered

Twitter Announces Digits for tvOS to Simplify the App Login Process

Following in Facebook's footsteps, Twitter today announced plans to make some of its Fabric developer toolkit available for tvOS apps. Developers will be able to integrate Twitter's Digits feature into apps, allowing end users to securely sign into tvOS apps using SMS verification. With Digits, customers can sign up for an app or service using a phone number with Digits providing a confirmation code used for verification purposes in lieu of a password, a feature that's likely to be handy on the new fourth-generation Apple TV. Entering lengthy passwords using the new Apple TV remote is a hassle and the Digits login feature will remove that pain point in apps that use it. Using Digits' device authorization, your app on the Apple TV will show a short alphanumeric code. Your user then simply enters the code on digits.com/appletv via their laptop or smartphone to authorize the device to their account. Once that's done, the TV device receives a Digits session for the user's account which you can use to instantly identify your user and personalize their experience. Along with Digits, developers can also integrate Twitter's data analysis service, Crashlytics, into apps to track install numbers and crash instances. Last week, Facebook announced a Facebook SDK for tvOS, designed to allow developers to access Facebook Login, Share to Facebook, and Facebook Analytics for Apps. With Facebook login, customers can sign up for services and log into apps using a similar confirmation code

Twitter Rebrands 'Stars' & 'Favorites' to 'Hearts' & 'Likes'

Twitter today announced the impending rollout of a new "Hearts" and "Likes" system for its social network, which will replace the traditional "Stars" and "Favorites" that's been used on the service for the past few years. The company cites a "confusing" quality to the star system that causes a disconnect between a new Twitter user and anyone who favorites their tweet. The heart, it believes, is more of a universal symbol of expression and connection. You can say a lot with a heart. Introducing a new way to show how you feel on Twitter: https://t.co/WKBEmORXNW pic.twitter.com/G4ZGe0rDTP— Twitter (@twitter) November 3, 2015 We are changing our star icon for favorites to a heart and we’ll be calling them likes. We want to make Twitter easier and more rewarding to use, and we know that at times the star could be confusing, especially to newcomers. You might like a lot of things, but not everything can be your favorite. The heart, in contrast, is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones. The heart is more expressive, enabling you to convey a range of emotions and easily connect with people. And in our tests, we found that people loved it. The hearts system will also make its way to the Twitter-owned Vine service, rounding out the social networks that the company owns -- including Periscope -- with a more uniform liking system. The company notes that the new update will roll out starting today on Twitter for iOS and Android, the web, Windows 10, TweetDeck, "and on Tweets across the Internet." Other services, like Twitter for Mac, will

Twitter Announces Upcoming Revamped Twitter for Mac App

At its Twitter Flight developer conference, Twitter today announced plans for a redesigned and updated Twitter for Mac client, reports TechCrunch. The new Twitter for Mac app will include support for several newer Twitter features such as in-line Vine, video, and GIF playback, group Direct Messages, photo Direct Messages, and in-line replies. Image via TechCrunch The app, which will be optimized for El Capitan, will show interaction highlights within the OS X Notification Center, and it has a built-in dark mode for users who prefer a darker interface. New Twitter for Mac in dark mode looks so good pic.twitter.com/OnDukgtslx— Rus (@rus) October 21, 2015 Twitter for Mac has never been a focal point for Twitter, and the app has often gone for months without updates and new feature additions. From June of 2011 to April of 2013 it received zero updates, and in 2014 and 2015, it's only been updated twice. With the revamped version, it's possible Twitter plans to invest more of its resources into the Mac app to allow it to better compete with third-party products like Tweetbot. Twitter plans to release its updated Mac app in a few months, with no concrete launch date set at the current

Twitter Rolling Out New Feature to Let Users Create Customized Polls

Twitter announced today that a feature it has tested with a few users on a small scale -- the ability to add customized polls to a tweet -- will officially be coming to everyone over the next few days. The company hopes that the new add-on will further expand its users' interaction with their followers, by streamlining a function that would have previously taken extensive measures of reading replies and re-tweets to successfully follow. If you want the public’s opinion on anything — what to name your dog, who will win tonight’s game, which election issue people care most about — there’s no better place to get answers than on Twitter. For poll creators, it’s a new way to engage with Twitter’s massive audience and understand exactly what people think. For those participating, it’s a very easy way to make your voice heard. Twitter users will be able to create a poll from the compose box of the Twitter desktop site or in any of the company's official mobile apps. Unfortunately, the feature won't be available in third-party Twitter apps, so those using clients like Tweetbot won't be able to see the polls or vote on them. Each poll will remain live for twenty-four hours from the time it is posted, and the company ensures that your name is kept anonymous from both the poster and the public when voting on other polls. Coming soon! We're rolling out the ability for everyone to create polls on Twitter: https://t.co/pH5a8q9Ujz pic.twitter.com/ijAKEMUdf1— Twitter (@twitter) October 21, 2015 The company promises that polls will be available "over the next few days," and users