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Summary:

The iPad screen is good for Twitter due to its size and the ability to rotate it to landscape orientation. I have a weakness for Twitter apps, and I’ve tried so many I lose count. Here are the current top five Twitter apps for the iPad.

Tweetdeck

When it’s not displaying the Fail Whale, Twitter is a pretty useful service for keeping up with family and friends. The first app I install on every mobile device is a Twitter app of one flavor or another, since having a good app can make all the difference to getting the most benefit out of Twitter. Fortunately, there are plenty to choose from.

The iPad screen is particularly good at working with the social network, due to its larger size. I admit I have a weakness for Twitter apps, and I’ve tried so many I have lost count. Here are my current top five Twitter apps for the iPad. If you have a favorite share it in the comments.

Twitterific Pro. This is my “go-to” Twitter app on the iPad. I use it in either portrait or landscape as it displays well in either orientation. Working with multiple Twitter accounts is easy (on the Pro version) and the app handles all standard Twitter functions. It is not as configurable as other apps, but it works very well. Users of the paid version can also install the iPhone version on that phone for free. Free and Pro ($4.99).

Tweetdeck. My favorite Twitter app for the desktop is Tweetdeck, as I find the multiple column display presents a lot of information at a glance. The iPad version is very similar, although it displays very differently. In portrait display, the top third of the screen is wasted until you tap on a tweet. That opens up the details window, which lets you do all the normal things to a tweet that you expect. Tilting the display to landscape shows the power of Tweetdeck, as it mimics the desktop version by putting a lot of information at your fingertips. Updates can be slow because of all the information in the multiple columns. Free.

Osfoora HD. Osfoora (strange name) can do virtually everything with Twitter you’d ever want to do, and has a configurable display. The display reminds me somewhat of Tweetdeck, so I’m not sure I like the wasted screen space. It’s a solid performer, and many iPad owners swear by this app, so it makes the cut. $3.99.

Twittelator. This app is one of the most attractive Twitter clients you’ll see. Twittelator looks good, but the layout can be confusing at times, because the timeline is rather small while the individual tweet window is huge in comparison. It is a full-featured Twitter client, and lots of people love it, so it’s on the list. $4.99.

Echofon Pro. Echofon adds syncing to a good Twitter app to give it a leg up on the competition. Unread tweets are synced among the iPad, iPhone and desktop so no tweet gets missed. More importantly, no tweet gets read twice due to device switching. $4.99.

Related GigaOM Pro content (sub req’d):  Forget, Syncing, Let’s Put Music in the Cloud!

  1. Since I do way more reading that posting on Twitter, I have begun to like Flipboard a whole lot. It just came out last night, but I have been using non-stop it since it did.

    I don’t conduct Twitter conversations so I don’t have a need for anything but reading others tweets and this fills the need very nicely.

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  2. Tweetdeck I find very buggy, and also don’t like apps that allow something (not display-related) in one orientation not allowed in others.

    You should add Tweetings to the list. The interface icons are kind of cartoonish, but it’s neck-and-neck with Osfoora for me as the best iPad client. Lots of power, and great use of screen real estate, which most of them lack.

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  3. I just went through this search myself (new iPad owner), and was pretty disappointed by the free offerings. Tweetdeck is buggy, Twitteriffic (free version) doesn’t allow multiple accounts, etc. The one that came closest to me was Shiny Tweet, which does nearly everything in a Tweetdeck-like UI. Give it a try if you’re looking for a free app.

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  4. Osfoora is an Arabic word that means “little bird”, or so my friends tell me.

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  5. I use Twitterific Pro as well. I was hesitant to pay the $4.99 at first, but it was totally worth it. I’ve tried Tweetdeck as well, but lately I’m using Socialite for Twitter/Facebook/Google Reader.

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  6. It came out too late to get considered here but having played with Flipboard today it is a fantastic way to follow Twitter and Facebook. It’s too much fun and darn useful.

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  7. Might you be able to verify if any of them offer two features I’m very fond of on Brizzly?

    auto expansion of shortened URLs
    showing images and video online

    It’s a pity there aren’t free versions of most of them, in order to test several out before handing over the money, even if the sums involved aren’t exactly extravagant.

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  8. EchoFon’s sync ability does indeed keep me synced across my iPhone, iPad and Mac and thats the killer feature that makes me use it.

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  9. Yes, as SUMIT PAUL, Osfoora means bird in Arabic, (little bird is also ok depending on which arabic dialect you are using)
    I like tweet deck but it crashes on me ever since I started to have my lists as columns, I switched to Osfoora, but I will try Twitterific pro

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  10. You really ought to include “Tweets” in your mix. It’s designed specifically for the iPad (not just another converted iPhone app), and has many new features you won’t find in any other app. Release 2.0 was just submitted to the App Store this week, and will be a free upgrade to existing customers! Oh yeah, and Tweets is complete ad free! http://www.applgasm-apps.com/tweets/

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