From Best-in-Class to the One-Star Champion in Just One Release

Twitter for iPhone used to get full marks in virtually every aspect. That was before the so-called “quickbar” 1. this is how today the user reviews look like in the German iTunes App Store for Twitter for iPhone:

It’s that easy. Add one tiny little feature and your entire reputation is washed away by a flood of one-star reviews. Granted, there are other apps on the store that harvest similarly bad reviews2. But most of these already have a record of being a steaming pile of mess.

OK, so what is this all about? The feature that triggered all this uproar is a black bar on top of the twitter app. The bar is - similar to a news ticker - updated constantly with links or #hashtags, sometimes tagged “sponsored”. The update frequency is really annoying and distracts from the timeline content.

It will be interesting to see what consequences this will bring on. It’s not that users of the Twitter app would not have any options. There is a ton of Twitter clients out there. Will Twitter revoke the feature in the next release? How many users will eventually switch to other clients?

On a related note, my personal recommendation clearly goes to Echofon. Especially users who read their timeline partly on their Mac and partly on their iPhone may benefit from Echofon’s ability to synchronize the timeline across devices.

  1. Also dubbed as “dickbar”.

  2. And, boy, do they deserve it.