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Appletell reviews Twitterlink and Twitfire for iPhone, iPod touch

Sections: iPhone, iPhone OS, SDK and hacks, iPhone/iPod touch/iPad, iPod, iPod touch, Reviews

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“What are you doing right now?” That’s the basic question of Twitter, but sometimes simply telling people isn’t enough; sometimes you need to show them via a link or a photo. And the two Twitter clients reviewed here make sharing that information even easier.

Much like JustUpdate, these programs are focused on posting information. Neither one is set up to let you read other people’s Twitter feeds, or even your own Following page. Both work with the iPhone and iPod touch, and both are free.

Twitterlink

twitterlink iconCategory: Social Networking (Twitter client)
Developer: Mere Complexities
Requirements: iPhone 2.0 software
Compatibility: iPhone and iPod touch
File Size: 0.1 Mb
Version Reviewed: 1.0.1
Price: Free

For people who use the iPhone’s Safari browser, the lack of Cut and Paste can make sharing links a problem. Enter Twitterlink, which handles this by creating a bookmark in Safari that works around this limitation. Once you get it set up, you simply navigate to the page (in Safari) you want to share, open the Bookmarks file, and select the Twitterlink, er, bookmark. The URL of your current page is copied and shortened using the Is.gd service, then Twitterlink opens and pastes the short URL into a post. Just add whatever else you’d like in your Tweet, and you’re off. It’s a rather nifty bit of javascript that works around Apple’s reluctance to implement Cut/Paste.

twitterlinks post screentwitterlink bookmarks

There is a downside, however; while Twitterlink will create the bookmark in Safari, you’ll need to go in and edit the text to make the javascript work. The maker, however, provides step-by-step instructions on how to do this.

Twitfire

twitfire iconCategory: Social Networking (Twitter client)
Developer: Eric Allam
Requirements: iPhone 2.1 software
Compatibility: iPhone and iPod touch
File Size: 0.2 Mb
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Price: Free

While Twitfire may only post to your Twitter feed, it aims to be a one-stop shop for all your linking needs.

Across the top of the writing screen, you’ll find shortcuts for photos, URLs, location, and replying to your friends.

The Photo button lets you select a photo from your library, or, if you have an iPhone, take a new picture. It then automatically uploads the picture to TwitPic and copies the short URL to your post.

twitfire post screentwitfire location shortcut

Hitting the URL button opens a browser within Twitfire that lets you search Google for the link you want (you can’t access the URL directly, you have to find it through Google). Once you’ve selected the link, a short URL (again, using Is.gd) will be pasted into the post field.

The location link gives you the option of posting a URL to a map of your current location, or updating your Twitter profile with your longitude and lattitude. Hitting the @ button brings up a list of the people you’re following, and puts their name (with, of course, the @ symbol before it) in the post field, making it easier for those people to see that the Tweet is targeted towards them.

Which application you’ll find more useful depends on how you use your iPhone. If you find yourself on Safari a lot with a need to share links, Twitterlink can be a valuable tool for posting them. Twitfire, on the other hand, finds its value in giving you shortcuts to share several different kinds of info, and making the most of Twitter as a mobile tool.

They fill different niches, with Twitterlink acting as an add-on to Safari. Both are very stable and feature clean interfaces. The only thing either lacks is a landscape mode to make the keyboard even larger, and a way to read your feed and perhaps retweet links. But for Twitter users who need to share links, both are useful tools for Tweeting on the go.

Appletell Rating: Twitterlink
rating five of five
Download Twitterlink

Appletell Rating: Twitfire
rating five of five
Download Twitfire

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