Echofon, naan studio’s Twitter client, is available as native Mac and iPhone (s aapl) applications, and as a Firefox extension. The latest version, Echofon 3 for iPhone, has just hit the App Store, and looks to be a nice mobile client that supports all the latest Twitter features including lists, retweets and geotagging, so I thought I’d take it for a spin.
Out of the box, Echofon has a well-designed, simple UI that makes it easy to use. Once you’ve set up your accounts (just a matter of supplying your credentials), you’re presented with a well laid-out home screen that has your Twitter stream, navigation buttons along the bottom of the screen (for home; @ mentions; direct messages; lists; and search), while you can compose new tweets by tapping the button top right. The “Menu” button (top left) lets you switch between accounts and set up account options.
Tapping a tweet gives you options to reply or retweet. Tapping “retweet” gives you two options: “Retweet” or “Retweet with Comment.” The former uses Twitter’s new built-in retweet functionality, while the latter provides for an “old style” retweet that enables you to add your own commentary. It’s good to see both styles being accommodated, but it’s a little annoying that you have to select which one to use each time, if you have a definite preference.
The composition screen is equally well-designed, and handily allows you to rotate the screen for a landscape keyboard (formerly a Pro-only feature, now available to all users). This screen includes a useful display of the number of characters left available and buttons for searching for usernames of the people you follow, adding a photo, discarding the tweet, and geolocation tagging (if geolocation is enabled on your account).
List support also works well. Tap the “Lists” button to get a view of your lists (both those that you’ve created and those you follow). You can also create and edit lists on the go.
Echofon has other nice touches, too, including desktop sync — if you’re using a desktop version of Echofon, you can sync unread tweets between the clients.
I’ve been using TweetDeck on my iPhone because I need to keep an eye on several Twitter accounts, but although it’s improved over time it still has a tendency to crash and suffer from inexplicable annoying slowdowns occasionally. Echofon seems much more stable and snappier in use, but I’m not sure I like the way that it mixes tweets for multiple accounts as much as TweetDeck’s clean, separate columns that you can quickly switch between, so I’m not ready to move over just yet. If you’re only managing one Twitter account, though, I’d definitely recommend checking out Echofon — it’s a nicely designed, easy-to-use client that works well.
Are you an Echofon user? Let us know what you think of it below.