Twitter finally releases tablet-optimized Android app ...sort of

Twitter is finally playing nice with Android tablets. After a long wait, the microblogging service has announced it is finally releasing a tablet-optimized app for Android in the Google Play store. It's packed with features, many of which are exclusive to Android users.

There's just one problem: chances are you probably won't be able to get the app for your tablet yet. Certainly not as an aid to Android's fragmentation problem, Twitter is only releasing the tablet-optimized app for the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition at its start. Later on, it will be released to other Samsung tablets. Then finally at some point it will roll out to other brands' Android tablets.

If you happen to have the Galaxy Note 10.1, you have some good news. The Twitter app for Android tablets features its own new widget for your home screen, the ability to doodle over images you upload with Samsung's S-Pen, and a multi-screen view so you can simultaneously view two apps at once such as Twitter and Chrome.

Other than those nice additions, the Twitter app includes everything you'd expect; i.e. search at the top, stream of tweets front and center, and navigation with Connect, Discover, and Me to the left.

Those of you without a Galaxy Note 10.1 will have to wait a bit longer for the Twitter Android tablet app — potentially a few months or more — but hey, it doesn't seem too far away compared to how long you've already waited.

Source: Twitter | Image via Twitter

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DarkNet said,
I agree. But what does this have to do with Twitter signing an exclusivity contract with Samsung?

oh nothing, it just happens to contradict everything that android stands for, that's all

Again I ask, Android is the Operating System. What does a third party app have to do with this statement. It seems like you are trying to incline something here. I even took a few swigs from a liquor bottle to kill some brain cells to come to a lower level and I still don't see what is so special about posting this statement.

Any who, since I am drunk and stupid right now, I want to say Microsoft is very scared of Google by spreading lies. Yeah, nothing to do with the topic but hey that's what you did.

DarkNet said,
Again I ask, Android is the Operating System. What does a third party app have to do with this statement. It seems like you are trying to incline something here. I even took a few swigs from a liquor bottle to kill some brain cells to come to a lower level and I still don't see what is so special about posting this statement.

Any who, since I am drunk and stupid right now, I want to say Microsoft is very scared of Google by spreading lies. Yeah, nothing to do with the topic but hey that's what you did.


Android is an ecosystem.

Thanks for the bit of fact that everyone knows. Let me throw some more facts, Windows Phone is a weak ecosystem and iOS is a strong ecosystem, FireOS is a strong ecosystem. Are we through throwing pointless facts around that have nothing to do with the story?

Twitter official app, iOS or Android version, is horrible anyway. There are MUCH better alternatives for both platforms:

Tweetbot for iOS
Falcon Pro for Android

The official Twitter app is really nice on Android. Especially the beta. Falcon Pro is meh. Quite frankly I am not impressed by any of the third party apps after Twitter got its act together.

Is there a financial kickback from Samsung to do this?

Or is it an indication of the difficulties in developing tablet apps (or apps in general) for Android and they have to stagger it out as they test against all devices?

Either way it's not good for the Android platform as a whole, and a stupid move by Twitter in my opinion

I'd say more likely Samsung paid for a timed exclusive. I can't imagine a Samsung tablet being any more easier to develop for then any other (Android) tablet, as they all run the same OS. Plus this is a generic app, so it should run on any tablet that runs Android. It is not like for example, one of those games made specifically for Tegra 4 equipped tablets etc. Basically what I mean is, I doubt it's been made specifically for the hardware it's been first released on. It's just a generic app that is restricted to a line of tablets because money has been exchanged between those two companies.

I think I rambled a little hope what I said made some sense...

McKay said,
For a single tablet? That's rediculous!

That is Android for you. They did it with Flipboard too, released exclusively to a single (Samsung) handset. It's only a timed exclusive again though, so we'll see it on other tablets eventually. Just sucks they keep pulling stunts like this.

Xerxes said,

That is Android for you. They did it with Flipboard too, released exclusively to a single (Samsung) handset. It's only a timed exclusive again though, so we'll see it on other tablets eventually. Just sucks they keep pulling stunts like this.

I give it 24 hours before a cracked .apk is on XDA.

McKay said,

I give it 24 hours before a cracked .apk is on XDA.

Probably won't even be that, the guys over at XDA will be on the task quick smart.

Nazmus Shakib Khandaker said,

Windows 8 is much better in this aspect. All apps are tablet-optimized.

Well, you still need to write the UI to work well on a tablet, but this case would probably be due to an agreement between Twitter and Samsung

The_Decryptor said,

Well, you still need to write the UI to work well on a tablet, but this case would probably be due to an agreement between Twitter and Samsung

Not sure what you mean...

The nature of how the Windows 8 Apps framework is designed, UI scalability and touch is inherently supported, there is no special 'design' needed.

Nazmus Shakib Khandaker said,

Windows 8 is much better in this aspect. All apps are tablet-optimized.

A more apt comparison would be the exclusive apps Nokia released for their Lumia phones. You wouldn't call that fragmentation, would you?

Mobius Enigma said,

Not sure what you mean...

The nature of how the Windows 8 Apps framework is designed, UI scalability and touch is inherently supported, there is no special 'design' needed.

Android is the same, but you need to adapt the design to the form factor.

Edit: You're not going to use the exact same design on something like a 15" tablet as you would on a 7" tablet, something fine on the 15" would be cramped on a 7" tablet, and something fine on a 7" tablet would have wasted space on a 15" tablet, etc.

Nazmus Shakib Khandaker said,

Windows 8 is much better in this aspect. All apps are tablet-optimized.

Really? Why does the Fox News Room Windows 8 Twitter App look horrible on their BATs? Hmm, think about that one for a moment and see if this is exactly the same issue on Android

I'm sure you are smart enough to figure it out on your own.

DarkNet said,

Cracked? I think you just mean APK.

It'll be referred to as cracked because it'll be altered to remove the limitation of that ui only appearing on that Samsung tablet. On my old phone it had a custom ROM. Because it did, SMS integration was disabled in Facebook messenger. I had to get a "cracked" version from XDA that worked on all ROMs.

That's not how it works. I f you are an Android developer, you would be familiar with the Console and how you can limit who see the APK. In this case they only enabled it for the Samsung Tab.

When it is released, Twitter can decide to limit it to Android API ver. 15 or greater, with display densities that are XXX.

What you will get is just an APK. By the way, one is available now.

DarkNet said,
That's not how it works. I f you are an Android developer, you would be familiar with the Console and how you can limit who see the APK. In this case they only enabled it for the Samsung Tab.

When it is released, Twitter can decide to limit it to Android API ver. 15 or greater, with display densities that are XXX.

What you will get is just an APK. By the way, one is available now.

App makers can still limit apps to certain devices. Even ones with identical DPI and screen sizes. Facebook home was limited to very few devices at launch. Within 24 hours there was a cracked .apk on xda that worked on all devices.

The_Decryptor said,

Android is the same, but you need to adapt the design to the form factor.

Edit: You're not going to use the exact same design on something like a 15" tablet as you would on a 7" tablet, something fine on the 15" would be cramped on a 7" tablet, and something fine on a 7" tablet would have wasted space on a 15" tablet, etc.

True, but in reality Android is NOT the same as the Windows Frameworks, as they do better at device resolution independence and have inherent 'flow' features for layout and controls, and have universal touch usability. (Touch even works back through legacy applications that were designed before Touch and Stylus input was common.)


A quick App developed on Windows, specifically WinRT frameworks, will look and work great on a 1280x800 or 4k display and on a 7" device or a 100" wall using a Stylus or touch or a hand gestures from a camera input device.

This is where the Android frameworks fall behind, putting the heavy lifting on the App developers.

McKay said,

App makers can still limit apps to certain devices. Even ones with identical DPI and screen sizes. Facebook home was limited to very few devices at launch. Within 24 hours there was a cracked .apk on xda that worked on all devices.


True for Facebook Home. Not true for Twitter which was the point of the whole "cracked APK". That was all.

DarkNet said,

Really? Why does the Fox News Room Windows 8 Twitter App look horrible on their BATs? Hmm, think about that one for a moment and see if this is exactly the same issue on Android

I'm sure you are smart enough to figure it out on your own.

Because they snapped twitter. Windows 8 apps are not phone apps.

recursive said,

A more apt comparison would be the exclusive apps Nokia released for their Lumia phones. You wouldn't call that fragmentation, would you?

Nokia doesn't even have a Windows 8 device. Windows 8 is a desktop/tablet OS, unlike android, which runs stretched out ugly phone apps on a tablet.

Nazmus Shakib Khandaker said,

Because they snapped twitter. Windows 8 apps are not phone apps.


So much for the build once logic that Microsoft was going about for Windows Phone 8 Windows 8 and Xbox. Thank you for proving my point.