What I want from a Twitter App

These are all of the features I would like to see in a single twitter app.  If there is a twitter app that already has all of these features, then tell me, so I can STFU and get my perfect app.  I would love it if this could happen.

Twitter Features

  • Following/Unfollowing
    • Allow me to follow or unfollow people from the app. I know the API has this feature.
  • Search
    • Yep, I want to be able to search.
    • Yep, I would like the results to be in a time line like my normal feed
    • Yep, I would like to have multiple searches
    • Nope, you don’t have to keep these running in the background, just run them when I look at them.
      • Please try to get all the ones since the last one I looked at, or allow me a limit, or tell me about a limit, of how many you will pull if there are too many since the last time I looked.
  • Hashtags
    • You’ve got reply functionality, now link the #hashtags to the search page for them.

App Features

  • Always on top
    • Give me the option. (Thanks pwitter!)
  • API limitations awareness
    • know your limitations, compensate.  If I get 100 tweets per minute, you still don’t need to check every minute, if it means I am going to get 100 error messages from your app.  I would rather it be late, than see how your algorithm for pulling tweets is broken. (had problems on twitteriffic once an hour and pwitter 3 times in the first hour I used it)
  • Multiple twitter accounts in one feed
    • I choose the outline color for each account
    • Click the reply button in the feed item and replies from that account
  • Reply button functionality
    • I know why the @username always goes to the front of the twitter post I am writing, but I would like the option to turn that off.  I want the @username to go where my cursor is in the message. Having to copy/paste or write it out myself sucks.
  • Retweet option
    • I want to be able to 1-click to put a whole tweet in my typing box, with the letters RT and the original twitterer’s name
    • Don’t use via, seriously wtf!?
  • Mark feed items as read
    • Many of the programs out there do this, many don’t (pwitter I’m looking at you)
    • Also, when you get more items from my feed, please remember where I was, and leave the last tweet I touched in the active window
      • I don’t know about you, but I don’t watch my twitter feed.  I take mini vacations from work to check it.
  • Idiot Proofing
    • I have a feeling most of my request fall under this, but bear with me anyways…
    • I always send half a tweet, because my enter button is too close to my quotes button ( ” ), so ctrl + enter option is really nice (thanks pwitter)
  • Status Updates
    • Update my status on Adium, iChat, etc.  Twitteriffic does this with style.
    • Would be cool if it would update my status on FaceBook, LinkedIn, etc. too

Display Features

  • Timeline
    • Pull EVERYTHING since the last feed item I looked at
      • For multiple accounts, this means for the last item I looked at for each account, respectively
    • Pull items in the order they were tweeted, don’t add a bunch of crap at the bottom.  If you pull all the new stuff, you don’t have to worry about making sure I don’t miss something. (Twitteriffic pulls Replies and DMs to the bottom of your feed, why!?)
  • Replies
    • Make sure that replies to me have a background color that is easy to identify quickly.
    • Also, please make sure that it is easy to identify when I have that feed item selected.
    • These should NEVER look like all the other feed items, they are special, so make them look that way
  • Background options
    • Make as many colors as you want for backgrounds, but at least include black (spaz I’m looking at you)
  • User Icon on left of twitter post
    • Do not wrap the twitter post around the icon, that’s annoying
    • Or allow me the option to customize this


  • Image posting to TweetPic (again idiot proofed)
    • drag + drop into the tweet window would be amazing, I don’t really like having to use a browse/upload feature
  • Tr.im support
    • I like tr.im because it is one of the shortest url smashers out there. Also, they are great guys
  • Growl support
    • It’s great to have this, but please make sure it works.  Half the time, the apps I have seen have it, but the notifications never come up.

Bonus Points for Style

  • Grouping My users
    • Tweetdeck does it, but I don’t like how they do it.  It would be better if I didn’t have to employ a monitor-sized window to see all my groups
    • Allowing me to group them across multiple accounts = super mega mega bonus points
  • Make it free – also see 3rd item in “Plugins” below
    • I know this is a hugely tall order for all the features that I am asking.  BUT, if you can put ads in every 20-50 feed items you could make good money.
    • I understand you have to make money, and rightly so.  Putting an ad in for a free item is totally cool with me.
    • Now, if you can put in ads based on the content of the tweets around the ads…I might actually click them and not ignore them.
  • Plugins
    • Make an interface that will allow for plugins. This way you don’t have to write ALL of this code at once, and you can allow 3rd parties to write code for you.
    • This will allow anyone to choose their own suite of features and customize your software to them.
    • You could charge for plugins.

I will probably think of more things I would love to have, I know I am taking a pie-in-the-sky approach to my feature requests…

Added After publishing

  • I would like to be able to ctrl+click or apple+click to open the link without losing the twitter window. So I can open a bunch of links without having to track down my window or have my mouse lose focus on the current window.
  • I want to be able to search within my timeline.  I am tired of losing quality twitter posts that I want to revisit or retweet.
  • Suggestive features to choose a name from people I follow.  Could suggest as I type after the @ symbol, or just be a drop down.
  • From @xstaticstacey: add the ability to see all replies all the time

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  • http://accessibletwitter.com Accessible Twitter

    Great list, very complete. My Twitter web app has:

    -following/unfollowing functionality
    -hashtag links
    -retweet links
    -warnings when close to api limit
    -user icon is always on left of posts
    -it’s free with no ads (not yet at least)
    -coming very soon: Search and Trends

    *and* it’s web accessible!

    I really like the idea of making Replies appear different; I’ll add that to my list!

    • http://www.mkbernier.com Matt Bernier

      I appreciate you looking into this post. I know it is a huge list, however I was taking the best features of all the apps I had tried and putting them in one list. I’ll check yours out.

      Also, you can post about your app on LaunchYourProject.com for free, to get the word out!