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With the much anticipated arrival of push notifications, Twitter clients from across the App Store (and beyond) have been updated and re-polished to support this latest feature. However, times travel fast! Jeff was right when he said to me last week: “[this article] will likely be out of date within a week or so.” No fewer than three extra clients have landed onto the App Store and into our hands this week alone. We’ve dived in at the deep end to check out them all.

Why Push Notifications?
In the olden days, for instance, whenever 148 was the maximum amount of applications that you could install, if you wanted information you had to go to it. Be it the latest news or the latest tweets, the only way that you’d find out about it is if you went to the information source – a Twitter application for tweets; or a news website for breaking news. Push notifications reverses this role and the information is brought to you. You’re updated in real time about what is happening, who is tweeting you, and why the Zune is not as good as the iPod (okay, maybe not the last one). Push is practically limitless, and developers are keen to get ahead of the game.

The Clients
There are two types of clients for Twitter push notifications. Firstly, there is the fully-fledged application that has both a Twitter interface of its own and push notifications. Secondly, there are applications that leave the tweeting to the pros (eg. Tweetie / Twitterific) and a separate application is made solely for push. We’ll look at both.

Click to see full comparison chart (300kb)

Click to see full comparison chart (300kb)

Full rundown of the Twitter apps after the break.
Continue reading Twitter and Push Notifications – The Big One »

GpushIcon_128x128The long awaited Gmail Push Notification Service is not coming from the search engine giant and creator of Gmail, Google, but from Tiverias Apps: a non-related company specializing in productivity enhancing applications for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Tiverias Apps have released a statement saying that “GPush is the missing link between GMail and the iPhone. For the first time, receive instant Gmail message notifications”. The application was released on the App Store earlier this month but was taken down just hours after its release due to server complications. Tiverias have subsequently fixed the problem and have used this downtime to address other issues and concerns with the application. The downtime serves as both a fix and an update.

In essence, the application will mimic what it is like to receive a text message, where a user is alerted and a notification is shown on the front screen displaying what the message says. Several applications already take advantage of push notifications, but none have been posted to the App Store that allow push notifications of incoming mail.

Users should see signs of increased battery life as well, as data will be pushed instead of pulled. Under the current system, the Mail application operates under “Fetch”, a feature that pulls data to the iPhone at specified intervals (usually every 15 minutes). With the arrival of push notifications, data can now be pushed to a phone from external servers as opposed to be being pulled by phone:

Fetch (Data Pulling)
iPhone –> Talks to servers –> Pulls any data from servers

Push (Data Pushing)
Servers talk to Apple –> Apple Push Notification Service –> iPhone

As you can see, in the former (fetch) it is the iPhone that does all the work. With push, it’s the third party servers.

We’ll have a review of GPush up within a few days of its release. Check back soon!

6.00AM PST
9.00AM EST
14.00PM GMT

NotifyMe

NotifyMe

iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad
NotifyMe is an event reminder application that utilizes Apple's Push Notification Service. Whether it be TV Shows or To-Do events, the app will push information at a specified time. With a leaf from Apple's minimalist tree, this application is almost flawless.

Read The Full Review »
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