Developer: Riverfold Software
Price: $9.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad

iPad Integration Rating: ★★★½☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★½☆
Re-use Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Tweet Library is a powerful client capable of more than just accessing Twitter. The app provides a lot of features that users won’t be able to find anywhere else, but the price tag will likely block more than a few potential customers. It’s an app that may actually only appeal to a niche of its potential clientele, hampering its own potential for wide-scale success.

The best quality of this client is the fact that, true to its name, Twitter Library acts as an archive for Tweets. Your conversations and the things you follow won’t disappear into thin air over time. Everything you access is stored locally on your iPad. In addition, the content on Twitter can actually be downloaded to your computer for local storage or published to the web for longterm, remote access. That’s probably a blessing for people that depend on Twitter for business and other highly important conversations.

Users can view Tweets by a specific day, rather than sifting through timelines while trying to find something that was said last week. What’s even cooler is the ability to grab Tweets and copy them to specific collections. These collections, just like other Tweets, can then be saved as a local file that can be downloaded on your computer, or they can be published to the Tweet Library website for remote viewing. So, if an event is happening and Twitter users are responding, all of those Tweets can been lumped up into one list and then saved for later viewing.

Being able to manage multiple Twitter accounts is an added bonus. Anyone who works in Community Development or operates a Twitter account for their company will find being able to hop between their personal and business accounts extremely useful. Couple that with the ability to collect Tweets and publish them, and things like customer support conversations and Twitter contests become much easier to manage.

The app makes good use of the screen space offered by the iPad, presenting users with a large feed on the right and a menu of sorting options on the left. Tweet Library, like the newest version of Twitter, actually uses this real estate to let you preview links and images in small, floating windows. Tap a tweet and the link within pops up and can be explored individually. Aesthetically, however, this app is bland. Those that like nice textures and strong uses of the great display on the iPad will actually be disappointed by the gray and lackluster visuals.

Some elements here simply don’t make sense. When taping on a single tweet, you’re able to reply, retweet, favorite, show the conversation, copy the link or copy the tweet to a collection. Fine and dandy. It takes a few taps to actually select the user and then another tap to see their timeline. But, rather than seeing their timeline, the client actually performs a search with the terms “from:USER” and “to:USER.” That means you’re getting every message sent to the account your searching for, rather than just their messages. In order to see just their messages, you’ll need to enter the search bar and get rid of the “to:USER” term.

Other features are missing from, or are poorly approached in this application as well. The clever method of refreshing by pulling the feed downward, as in the official Twitter app, is absent. Accessing user names and hash-tagged items within Tweets can be a pain. It takes several taps to actually be able to select a hash-tag within a message, which, obviously, is pretty frustrating.

Tweet Library is a strong application that introduces several unique features to the Twitter platform. Being able to publish collections online and filter Tweets for individual elements like pictures and links makes it powerful. But the price tag suggests that there should be more separation from the official, free Twitter client already in the App Store. In fact, it’s because of the price that the only people that will get their money’s worth here are power users that make a living off of the service. Everyone else will likely be just as happy with the free alternative. Especially since the alternative already does a lot of what this app has to offer.

What’s strange about Tweet Library is that it feels like it’s targeting the wrong audience. Perhaps that’s a misstatement. It’s not that this app is targeting the wrong audience, it’s that Tweet Library isn’t aiming directly at the right audience. The bland aesthetics lead the charge, but the entire app feels extremely professional. And professionalism, oddly enough, seems to oppose the foundation of social networking for the majority of users out there. It needs to be emphasized that Tweet Library would probably work well for power users that are seeking professional success on Twitter. In fact, for professionals, Tweet Library may be the best Twitter resource in the App Store.

Posted in: iPad Apps and Games, iPad Social Networking, Reviews

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