7 Comments

Summary:

Twitter introduced an update for its iOS app last weekend that included the Quick Bar, a bar that featured trending topics displayed at the top of a user’s tweet stream. A new update today doesn’t take it away, but does make it far less annoying.

Twitter-quickbar3x2

Twitter introduced an update for its iOS application last weekend that included the Quick Bar, a black bar that featured trending topics prominently displayed at the top of a user’s tweet stream. It was met with resounding and forceful hatred by the Twitter user community, and quickly nicknamed the “dickbar.” A new update today doesn’t take away the dickbar, but it does make it far less annoying.

With the new update, the dickbar still sits on top of your tweet stream; that’s apparently not something Twitter is willing to make optional. But now, mercifully, it doesn’t stay within view as you scroll through your timeline. While I still don’t find the Quick Bar was in any way helpful (I rarely pay attention to trending topics, instead trusting my followers to surface things that I’ll find interesting), at least now it no longer really takes anything away from the experience, either.

As Mathew points out, the Quick Bar is a step toward making Twitter a profitable business, something which obviously irritated users who have certain expectations of the network as a free service. Twitter can’t make the Quick Bar an option, since it would mean giving up on or stepping back its promoted trends monetization efforts. But users should realize that if they don’t want ads in their free official Twitter app, a static Quick Bar is a very small price to pay instead.

This whole Quick Bar fracas should also remind users that the official app isn’t the only game in town. Twitter clients and which was best were once the subjects of hotly contested debate. The availability of an official solution has really eclipsed many of the great third-party options available. But as Twitter struggles to turn itself into a business, third-party apps once again have a chance to come to the forefront. Twitter’s App Store rating suffered hugely (down to only two stars) in the wake of the Quick Bar’s introduction, making this a good time to strike. Alternate Twitter clients might want to consider sales or even temporary giveaways to highlight their better-rated product’s visibility. Tapbots was smart, in that it just announced that its own Tweetbot app was currently in beta testing yesterday, which (coincidentally or not) was nicely timed to benefit from all the negative attention Twitter has been getting.

Do you use the official client? If so, would or has the Quick Bar cause you to switch? Do you think third-party Twitter apps still have a chance against official channels?

Related GigaOM Pro content (sub req’d):

  1. any idea why they removed the text immobilizer option from new update , it was so good to read only text from web pages , was that removed to get more ad revenues from websites

    Share
  2. I switched to Tweetdeck because of the dickbar and won’t go back until it’s gone. It annoys me. Of course third party apps have a chance, in most cases third parties add features most users want as opposed to what the “officials” want you to have.

    Mike

    Share
  3. Promoted tweets were mildly annoying, but i could live with it.
    The quickbar on the other hand, makes me want to quit twitter altogether.
    I can’t, because twitter is good for my business, but I don’t follow trends, and I never will. I don’t want to be forced to see them. It’s utterly impersonal, and offensive.
    3rd party clients will be my go-to from now on… at least until Twitter Inc. realizes it can’t properly monetize things until bans 3rd party clients altogether.

    Share
  4. I still don’t like the quickback, though it is tolerable at this point but only barely. I’m still on the look out for a replacement client. Twitter could also capitalize on the hate for the bar and provide a paid version of the app with the option to remove the bar. I’d pay a few dollars to remove it.

    Share
  5. Luckily, there is a Jailbreak hack to remove that! #Cydia #iPhone

    Share
  6. It never really bothered me that much. I do think covering the latest tweet was bad design, but all you had to do was pull down and it moved above the search bar. It was not enough for me to make a run to the app store.

    What drives me crazy about the official twitter apps is the lack of consistency across different platforms. I’m not just talking the UI differences; the same buttons do different things. It is real confusing if you are using android and iOS systems.

    Share
  7. I use the twitter app more than I do the desktop and I had absolutely no problems with the quick bar. I found it quick and intuitive.

    People who complain about such minor things have nothing better to do.

    Share

Comments have been disabled for this post