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SocialScope Makes Tweeting Easy on the BlackBerry

socialscopeAsk any BlackBerry (s rimm) owner about their device, and there’s a good chance they’ll sing the praises of the keyboard, the push email, and the ability to rapidly exchange text messages and IMs. Plus, a fairly decent Facebook client for the gadget integrates seamlessly with the BlackBerry Inbox. In other words, it’s a perfect communications device — except for two things: It’s been lacking a high-quality Twitter client and a native Internet telephony app from one of the big boys such as Truphone or Skype. Well, soon BlackBerry owners will no longer bemoan the social media void. They’ll be able to experience on-the-go nirvana with SocialScope, one of the most elegant BlackBerry apps I have ever used.

Not only does SocialScope allow me to use Twitter services (including sharing photos, videos and links), it allows me to stay in touch with my Facebook contacts as well by bringing their status updates into a common social inbox. I also can keep track of what my friends are doinsocialscope1g on Flickr. SocialScope will support other social-networking services, depending on their popularity. Its idea of aggregating all social media into a single application is similar to Motorola’s (s mot) MotoBlur software interface for Android-based mobile phones.

“Our vision is to optimize social media for the smartphone, similar to what RIM did for email,” said Amit Kumar, who started Ubiquitous Systems, the company behind SocialScope. “We call SocialScope a mobile inbox for your social networks.” At our Mobilize 09 conference, many industry insiders said that social networking was the primary driver of mobile data usage on cell phones. With the exception of Facebook’s iPhone application, the social media experience on mobile phones is limited. SocialScope is combining some server-side processing with native mobile apps, such as its BlackBerry application, to give people a good experience.

So far, SocialScope has exceeded my expectations. Though still in beta, the application has a polished feel; it leverages the BlackBerry keyboard and track ball to maximum effect. The app is actually divided into virtual tabs, and you can use the trackball to scroll among them. The tabs include the entire inbox which has all messages, tweets directed at you (@om), private direct messages, Facebook updates, and a separate tab for Flickr.
socialscope2The user interface is clean, simple and intuitive — or at least as good as you can get on the BlackBerry platform, which doesn’t boast many apps that meet my aesthetic sense. The only problem I’ve had with the app: Because it runs in the background and is constantly checking for updates, it drains your battery quite rapidly.

SocialScope is planning to launch the complete app on the BlackBerry sometime in the near future, but it also is working on clients for Palm, Android, iPhone, Symbian and Windows Mobile. Nevertheless, if you are a BlackBerry owner, it makes sense for you to download this app the instant it becomes available.

26 Responses to “SocialScope Makes Tweeting Easy on the BlackBerry”

  1. As mentioned, the likelihood of getting a SocialScope invite these days is just slim to none. I tried first about 3 months ago, then like mentioned, I tried from several email addresses several times a week. Maybe they labeled me and decided not to invite me. Either way, I have short patience for ‘closed circles.’ There are other apps that will compete. I will stick with them because they haven’t already selectively eliminated me.

  2. dj haras

    Socialscope is phenomenal! I just wish they’d bring back the “fading” feature (when you’d click between messages, it would fade in and out). Now it just snaps back and forth like the rest of the other apps. To me personally, that was one of the subtle additions that made Socialscope stand out aesthetically. I’d show my friends on my Tour 9630 all the features Socialscope has (they were also mad that I got my invite before they did after waiting patiently for 6 months). They were really amazed at that specific fading feature as well. It looks so cool!! I hope you wonderful people at Socialscope bring it back.

  3. Those of you who are concerned about battery life, try this:
    go to settings, then scroll down to “connection.” set refresh frequency to manual and the option “refresh on launch” to “yes,” instead of “no” (which is the default). Though this will prevent it from updating and running in the background (so you’ll actually have to open the app to find out if any new activity has occurred), it will keep it from running down your battery. I have had mine running like this and like it better this way. I also don’t have my phone notifying me every 2 seconds because a friend has had a status update – lol.

  4. I have been using one of the lite versions for months now on my Bold and LOVE it. It took me a long time to get an invite but once I did I grabbed SS.
    It is the perfect companion on a Blackberry for Facebook and Twitter.
    Now if I can only get an update to the newest version… that is as hard as getting an invite.
    Uber is good but once you use SS you will not need another client.

  5. SocialScope is pretty awesome. I don’t even have this new version that you are running om, but I can not wait for it to come out. I have been using this for a few months and can say that the SocialScope team is very responsive to feedback. They generally respond within a few hours, but I haven’t waited longer than a day for a response.
    @Ken it will be worth the wait when the finally get it out, though I have many friends who are just a frustrated as you.

    Ubertwitter doesn’t really hold a candle to SocialScope.

  6. SocialScope can kiss my ass. I have been requesting an invite for this from day one and still
    nothing. Not even the decency of a reply to the emails sent to them.

    If this is they way they operate, I can certainly do without them.

  7. I’ve been using ss for a while on my storm, and there are only good things i can say about it. the ability to tweet and check on facebook in the same app is pretty awesome. the app does hog the battery though, and its the first one to be killed when I need to conserve power. all in all, the beta runs superb on my storm, and I can’t wait for the final cut.

  8. @amanda, not so. I’ve been a beta user for several months and it is as fantastic as an experience as Om alludes. One feature Om may have missed above is the persistent groups function that makes scanning for tweets/updates from stronger ties easier.

    It does cause a battery drain, so I slow down the update intervals and manually refresh if actively using.

  9. Apparently only high profile bloggers are able to get beta invites. I’ve tried contacting SocialScope numerous times through the signup form and directly through Twitter to no avail. I am the head of social media at my company and would love to test out the app. I think it would behoove SocialScope to have some sort of vetting process for their beta invites.

    • @felixisdope

      im not a high profile blogger and i received an invite. i would suggest that you send multiple invite requests from different emails and repeat with the same emails at least once a week. it truly is a great APP that i would recommend to any Blackberry user who is on twitter on an hourly basis such as me.