Twitter launches new test app

Posted on March 13, 2019


Microblogging site Twitter has recently released a new beta app to be tested by a group of users.

The announcement was made through the site with a tweet asking people to apply to be part of the testing programme.

The app, which is being called ‘twttr’ as homage to the original name of the main platform, was first introduced in January this year at the CES conference in Las Vegas. The app has been designed specifically as an experimental testing space for Twitter, where the company can test out any new ideas away from the main platform, allowing it to get feedback from users so they can develop features as a result of these tests before introducing it to the main site.

As demonstrated at the CES Conference, the twttr app showed a different format for conversations, showing a new layout for replies, where interactions appeared in a more rounded way, were indented and colour coded in order to make them easier to follow. Furthermore, engagement details were hidden to make reading through longer message threads simpler, offering users better visual cues.

Over time, the company may use this prototype as a way to test out future changes it considers making to the main site. Twitter has stated that not everyone will be able to use the test app. Only a few thousand selected English and Japanese language speakers will be invited to use it, providing they follow the rules the company sets out. There is no NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement) in place, so this means that those who are using the twttr app will be able to openly discuss what they see and think about the test app, further opening it to discussion and feedback.

Twitter has explained that the first set of testers will be receiving email invites over the next few days, and once received, they will be able to click a link confirming that they wish to participate. From here, the twttr app can be downloaded and used instead of the main platform. Feedback can be provided through an online form.

The company is still trying to work out the best way to display conversations on the site, as currently they are hard to follow visually and are often subjected to trolling, abuse and harassment, which the site hopes to combat.

The prototype will not immediately solve the problem about trolling, but any changes to the visual aspect of conversations can help to improve the user experience. The app therefore heavily depend on user feedback, with Twitter acknowledging that it is a work in progress.

Applications to become part of the test are still open according to the site, with interested parties urged to apply.

Operations Manager at Engage Web
Drawing from a broad pool of experience that ranges from university studies in English Language to his work as a medical receptionist in a busy GP practice, Alan fits right at home as Engage Web’s Operations Manager.
Alan Littler

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