At its beginning, Twitter was one of those social media startups that many expected would die off. It started back in 2006, but here we are in 2012 and Twitter is still running strong. The Twitter website interface has undergone a number of changes since its inception, and some would argue that the current Twitter interface is all good and dandy.
But then there are others, like me, who don’t particularly enjoy using Twitter’s home interface. Whether it’s due to aesthetic reasons (it’s ugly!) or simply a matter of inconvenience (I have to keep that tab open!), you may want to look into a more standalone solution – a desktop Twitter client.
These free desktop Twitter clients will allow you to interact with all of Twitter’s goodness without having to pop open a new browser tab. These programs run in the background and continually update with new tweets and messages. And the best part is that you won’t have to pay a cent.
For a while now, DestroyTwitter has been the one and only Twitter client sitting on my computer. This is because when I first started using Twitter in 2010, I had a weak laptop and needed the lightest, most resource-friendly client available. On that front, DestroyTwitter is indeed awesome. Very fast, very light, very minimalistic.
But now that I’ve been checking out all of these different desktop Twitter clients, it seems like DestroyTwitter has fallen behind just a tad. Some features, like support for multiple accounts, are missing or are too obscure for me to figure out how to use. But it does allow for a good deal of customization and filtering, so it’s definitely worth a try.
Ever since Twitter bought out TweetDeck, it appears that this has become the main Windows client for Twitter. It’s seen a lot of changes over the years, many of which were a step in the right direction. Today, TweetDeck maintains its position as one of the most widely used Twitter clients for the desktop.
The best features are support for multiple accounts and being able to schedule tweets ahead of time. The multi-column design allows you to keep tabs on multiple items simultaneously, or you can scrunch it down to be as minimal as you need it to be. The aesthetics are slick and smooth and the memory requirements aren’t very much. And the icing on the cake is that it’s free.
MetroTwit’s big claim to fame is in its inspiration – the Metro UI. Not only is it designed aesthetically to match the Windows Metro aesthetic, but it has also been designed functionally to take advantage of Microsoft’s .NET framework. That means that it utilizes native Windows functions in order to maximize speed and efficiency.
One cool feature of MetroTwit is the OMG! button, which acts as an “undo” in case you accidentally post a tweet prematurely or in poor judgment. Otherwise, the feature set here is about the same as you’ll find in most big-name Twitter clients.
Unfortunately, the free version of MetroTwit is ad-supported and limited to one account. Upgrading to Plus will remove those limitations for the price of $15.
Straight on the Janetter website is the following claim - the best Twitter client on the net. In a market filled with great products, like the rest listed in this article, a claim like that needs to be backed up with substantial evidence. Does it live up to expectations? Well, that depends on what you’re expecting.
Janetter has a distinct Asian feel, which makes sense because it’s developed in Japan (as far as I know). But have no fear, because it fully supports English. Other than that, it’s free and supports multiple columns and multiple accounts. Janetter really shines in customization – dozens of themes, font and display changes, wallpapers–it’s got mostly everything.
Echofon is a newcomer in the desktop Twitter client arena, but it’s really made an impact in recent months. It covers many platforms: Windows and Mac, iPhone, iPad, and there is even an add-on for Firefox. Though it is free, it is supported by ads. Removing the ads will cost you $10.
The cool thing about Echofon is that it effortlessly and seamlessly synchronizes your Twitter experience across all of its varying platforms. If you like to access Twitter from every kind of device, you’ll love this one. The interface is clean and simple; the program is lightweight and fast. Definitely worth a try.
Tweetings is similar to Echofon in that it covers a lot of platforms: Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPad, and Chrome extension. Also like Echofon, Tweetings offers synchronization across all devices. Pretty cool stuff, indeed. Though Tweetings costs $3 for Mac, it is free for Windows and Chrome.
The drawback to Tweetings is that the Mac version is just better than the Windows version in terms of sleekness and visual design. However, you’ll still be able to use scheduled tweets, filters, and even Twitlonger when you need to write tweets that are longer than the default 140 characters.
What desktop app do you use for accessing Twitter? What features do you love about it?
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