Developer: App Cubby

Price: $2.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: DEVICE

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

Overall Rating: ★★★☆☆

Many twitter users may find themselves inundated by tweets and updates. It can be a real chore reading through hundreds of tweets. Tweet Speaker is an app that will read all the tweets in a user’s twitter feed out loud to them.

Users can log in to their twitter account in Tweet Speaker and the app will load up the most recent tweets in the user’s feed. Users can also choose to load up tweets from any specific lists they have set up on their Twitter account. Once loaded, the users can scroll through the tweets to view and read them normally. The user can choose any tweet and press play to have the app begin reading the tweets from that point on. The digitally rendered voice then reads through each tweet, one after another first announcing the name of the user who posted the tweet or the user who retweeted the original tweet. The text of the tweet is read aloud and any links are identified as links and the titles of the linked page is read as part of the tweet. This is a nice feature because it gives the user an idea of what is linked without having to actually click through to the link. At the bottom of the app is a timeline that shows approximately when the tweets users are listening to that moment were posted. Users can also scroll through this timeline to find tweets from a specific time. Users can also tweet, reply, and retweet from within the app.

Unfortunately, any app that “reads” text out loud is only as good as the rendered voice and its ability to create understandable speech from text. Here, Tweet Speaker suffers from the same shortcomings as other apps that render digital speech from text. Generally, the speech is clear and understandable. If tweets only consisted of normal, out of the dictionary words then there would be no problem. But when abbreviations and slang enter the equation, the speech becomes much harder to understand.

So while the issues with translating text to speech limit the usefulness of this app it still works very well as a way to get through a lot of tweets by just listening to them. Tweet Speaker will probably not replace a user’s preferred Twitter platform, but it can make itself useful in situations where other Twitter platforms are inaccessible.

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

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