Thursday, April 30, 2009

SocialScope vs Twitterfon

One of the luxuries of having multiple devices on different OS's is the ability to compare various pieces of software. It seems like its a forgone conclusion that iPhone apps are "better" than Blackberry ones, but I've found one situation where this isn't necessarily true.
These days it seems like everyone from the mailroom clerk to the CEO is running a Twitter application of some sort on their mobile device. For Blackberry, the app to have used to be Twitterberry until SocialScope came along with its exclusive beta, and slick UI. Twitterfon is arguably the best of the free iPhone Twitter clients, and I've been pleasantly surprised to find that there's at least one case of a Blackberry app beating the competition.

Information Overview

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If you know anything about SocialScope, then you know that its main claim to fame was its integration of Facebook and Twitter into a single stream. However, what we who use SocialScope know, is that the secret sauce lies in the ability to preview the images referred to in the tweet. So far this includes images attached with Twitpic, Facebook, and the cover image for YouTube videos.


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On the other hand, Twitterfon has a link icon that you can tap to see the webpage referenced in the tweet from within its internal browser. It also shows you a count of how many updates, replies and messages that are unread.
Twitterfon's layout is surprisingly less eye-candy than SocialScope. Its a flat black on white display with hardcoded colors for new updates and messages.

Following the Conversation

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When you select the link icon for a reply, you are taken to the recent updates for the mentioned user. This does not make for a smooth way to follow a conversation, especially if the tweet replied to is older.

One the other hand, using SocialScope, you can click directly on the @username and see the exact tweet it is in response to. Even more intellligently, if the user did not actually use the 'reply' and is simply mentioning a user, it will not tag the tweet as 'in reply to'!

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Clicking the highlighted text brings you to:

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Versus this which shows she is referencing a user but not a specific tweet:


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Overall you have 2 nice clients, but its interesting to see that SocialScope has made one that has a nicer UI in my opinion, and the navigation is easier and more intuitive in spite of not running on a touchscreen device.

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