Some might think that this is a bit over-the-top-title. But many power users (including me) think Twitter, who bought Tweetdeck in May 2011 for a whopping price of $40 million, is severely cramping up the most popular desktop application by cutting down its unique core features (discussed in detail below) in the name of speed.
Out goes Adobe Air!
Ever since Tweetdeck was launched, it was based on Adobe Air. The latest update is a move away from Adobe Air and hence Tweedeck is now a native Windows (and Mac) client. It also has a web version at web.tweetdeck.com. As a matter of fact, the desktop client is nothing but a wrapper over the web version and hence it feels a lot more snappy & doesn’t hog memory as its predecessor. The updates now feel more realtime than in the old tweetdeck. But there ends the positives.
A lot of negatives
The Tweetdeck native app for Windows is full of bugs, tweets missing and also need improvement and more features!
— Nirmal (@nirmaltv) December 10, 2011
1. Missing tweets
A lot of users are complaining about the missing tweets in the new Tweetdeck. Not just the New style RTs, some @mentions are randomly missing as well. This is an easier thing to fix though.
2. Missing Social Integration
The old Tweetdeck had support for Foursquare, Linked in & the erstwhile Google Buzz. People were expecting Google+ integration. But with the new Tweetdeck, Twitter has taken off everything except the standard Facebook integration. A big let down I must say.
3. Non-resizable columns
Unlike the old version, the new Tweetdeck doesn’t let you resize the column width. Previously, I used to have at-least 6 columns visible at any time on my 15″ laptop. Now, not more than 4 columns are visible at a time. Technically speaking, we weren’t able to resize the columns in old Tweetdeck as well, but the minimum width for columns was much lower than what it is now. Moreover, users were able to scroll to the hidden columns, but now it takes multiple clicks to achieve the same.
4. Editing the Lists
This was one of the most unique features of Tweetdeck. Users were able to add/delete people from their lists directly from Tweetdeck. The new update has taken off this feature. Irony is, this feature goes missing in Twitter’s own iOS/android app as well!
5. Built-in Image/Youtube Viewer
Another unique and lovable feature which went missing in the new Tweetdeck is the in-built image & YouTube viewer. Many image services like yFrog, TwitPic, Flickr, Instagram were supported in the old Tweetdeck. In the new version, even Twitter’s very own image service goes unsupported. A big #FAIL!
6. No Drag&drop support for image upload
Users were able to drag and drop the images to Tweetdeck’s status update box and this goes missing in the new version. Not a major letdown for many, but was definitely a nice-to-have feature.
There are many other smaller but still annoying changes. There is no dedicated status update box anymore. It has been replaced by a big blue tweet button. There is no unified DM inbox for users with multiple accounts. Each account needs to have its own DM column now.
In addition to these, Mac users are complaining of weird bugs like when opening a browser, TweetDeck also forces the Mac App Store to open and also the basic 140 character countdown is missing from status update box.
It is clear that Twitter’s intent is to take the desktop client to the masses by making it simple & mainstream, while ignoring the needs of power users. But I fear the worst for Tweetdeck. It is already turning out to be a lot different than what we have known it for. So, don’t be surprised if Twitter kills Tweetdeck as a brand and turns it into a self-branded desktop client in the near future.