Twitter announced that it will kill off all mobile and some desktop versions of its TweetDeck application in order to make way for its own web-based version. The iPhone, Android and Adobe-Air desktop clients will be pulled from all app stores in early May, and the varying apps will cease to function shortly after. TweetDeck was acquired by Twitter in 2011.
Twitter warned that TweetDeck may not function properly while it’s making this shift. The company also announced they’ll be pulling integration with Facebook.
In post on their blog, Twitter explained they need to pull support for its various iterations in order to focus on a single, web-based, version of the program. Writes Twitter:
In many ways, doubling down on the TweetDeck web experience and discontinuing our app support is a reflection of where our TweetDeck power-users are going. Over the past few years, we’ve seen a steady trend towards people using TweetDeck on their computers and Twitter on their mobile devices. … That said, we know this applies to most of our users –– not all of them. And for those of you who are inconvenienced by this shift, our sincere apologies.
By closing support, TweetDeck become the latest in Twitter’s war on Twitter apps, where the company has limited control over how paid advertisements are displayed. To fix this, Twitter announced restrictions for its newest API, version 1.1, in August 2012, which limited third-party developers to 100,000 user limits. While the restrictions have squelched the adoption of many third-party clients, like Tweetro, it has given Twitter more leverage over how successful apps grow.
This recent development is in line with its past decisions, and adds credence to the claim by Mark Suster, a venture capital investor quoted by The Verge regarding Twitter’s API restrictions, that Twitter wants to become a media company more akin to Facebook.