It's official: TweetDeck, the makers of a popular app that allows social media fanatics to tweet and update their various social media profiles from a single interface, has been purchased by Twitter. Rumors about the deal have been swirling around the Internet for a week before reaching a fever-pitch Tuesday afternoon. Tweetdeck laid all the speculation to rest earlier today, and even managed to tweet the deal in under 40 characters: "Official: TweetDeck Has Been Acquired By Twitter http://j.mp/lUHTnH"
You could see this one coming a mile away, or weeks away if you follow our complex conversion algorithm for distance and length of Internet rumors and speculation. Twitter's impending takeover of TweetDeck has been rumored since the beginning of the month, and it's now semi-official. According to reports, Twitter spent more than $40 million acquiring TweetDeck, though the exact figure isn't yet known since Twitter is so far refusing to commit 140 (or less) characters confirming the buyout.
A preliminary report from the Wall Street Journal claims that Twitter is in "advanced talks" to buy the popular Twitter client TweetDeck for $50 million. Neither company is talking, but The Journal apparently has multiple sources on the matter. If true, Twitter will have taken yet another step toward controlling the application ecosystem for their platform.
TweetDeck is one of the most popular desktop Twitter clients out there, and a new beta program is aiming to bring the app into the web. TweetDeck is preparing to open a limited beta test of the new HTML5 TweetDeck web app. The product will initially support Chrome, Firefox 3.6, Firefox 4 and Safari. Internet Explorer 9 and Opera support will be added later.
Apple's Steve Jobs didn't hold back his contempt for Google's Android platform during Monday's earnings call. According to Jobs, Android is "very, very fragmented and [it] becomes more so every day." Oh really? Not so fast, says Iain Dodsworth, CEO of the TweetDeck client for Twitter.
"Did we at any point say it was a nightmare developing on Android?," Dodsworth tweeted. "Err nope, no we didn't. It wasn't."
Dodsworth went on to post another Twitter message saying, "We only have two guys developing on Android TweetDeck so that shows how small an issue fragmentation is."
TweetDeck is available for the desktop and as a mobile app for both Apple's iOS and Android.
It seems TweetDeck is the latest target of unscrupulous internet fiends. Just weeks after seeing a fake TweetDeck app show up in the Android Market, hacked Twitter accounts are spewing out links purporting to be an update to the popular Twitter client. As TweetDeck notes on their website, "These tweets are from hacked accounts and this file does not come from us. Do not download it."
The scam tweets are usually packed with some sort of phrase making them seem more authentic. The tweets may read, " Download TweetDeck udate ASAP!" or, "Sorry for offtopic, but it is a critical TweetDeck update. It won't work tomorrow!" It is unclear what the download does, but users that fell for this are advised to run a full virus scan of their computer, and have it serviced if need be.
Have you seen these tweets floating through the social web? Do you know anyone that fell for it? We can't find any victims 'round here.
I've been a stalwart user of TweetDeck for all my 140-character messaging needs for quite some time now. But that's the problem with having a favorite freeware program: Your devotion to a tried-and-true application could be preventing you from reaching out and discovering a program that does an even better job. I mean, TweetDeck--awesome as can be--sure isn't perfect. There are a few features I wish I could get my hands on and, conversely, a few features I wish I could excise from the program with one almighty keystroke.
So all this got me thinking. I cover a lot of apps in these weekly Freeware Files roundups. But apps typically go through a number of changes throughout their lifespans. For better or worse, not every app is always going to look like it does when it's been profiled in a Freeware Files column. And with new programs entering the freeware fray at all times, what's a great recommendation one day might turn out to be an average or dull recommendation the next.
So, instead of just profiling five different Twitter apps this week, I'm going to make this more of a challenge. TweetDeck has been a top Twitter application on the market for some time now. What has it been up to since we last took a look at the software. More importantly, what other apps have risen the occasion to challenge--or topple--this killer program?
Do you hate Adobe AIR? I sometimes do. While the applications based on Adobe's framework can be pretty neat to use, there's something about their similar look and shared frameworks, not to mention features, that just can just drive me up the wall. Plus, every new Adobe AIR-based application has to be installed and run through Adobe AIR itself. While it's a handy way to make sure that you're running the most up-to-date version of the application, the Adobe AIR platform isn't very conducive to portable use. Actually, you can't stick AIR-based applications on a USB key and run them at all--the host computer would still need Adobe AIR for these apps to function.
That's but one minor complaint about the AIR platform. There are more, but this week's freeware roundup isn't intended to be a slam on these Adobe apps. Rather, I'll be taking a look at some of Adobe AIR's more popular applications and offering up unique freeware alternatives that don't require use of the AIR platform to work. Not all of the listed applications will support portable use out-of-the-box, but you can use the popular Mojopac Free program to store and access all of these apps on any USB device of your choosing.
Put your trigger-finger on the uninstaller button for Adobe AIR, then click the jump!
For many, TweetDeck is the desktop app of choice when tweeting and keeping track of other’s updates. And, with the latest version about to release, the Adobe AIR program will add some support for everyone’s favorite forgotten social network, MySpace.
The new version will also come with stronger bit.ly integration, automatic and instant conversion of long links into shorter ones as you type them, the ability to drag photos directly into TweetDeck and post them to Facebook, and even the capacity to click a hashtag and then open up a new column showing what folks are saying.
What's that? You're not on Twitter? Get out. From Will Smith to surgeons--freakin' surgeons!--millions of people worldwide are using this popular online service to offer up brief, 140-character descriptions of the key events in their fascinating lives. And you too could join the bandwagon/party/mayhem, but you sure aren't going to do it from Twitter's Web page. That just wouldn't be very Maximum PC of you when a host of other options exist for pulling an up-to-the-second ton information out of this living, breathing Web entity.
So join us as we explore five of the top Twitter clients. If you like what you see, perhaps you'll even be so inspired as to write your very own "Tweet," or "Twit," or "message" about your software adventures! Just promise you won't do it from the operating table, ok?