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<firstimage=”//static.makeuseof.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/Pluggio.png”>It seems that every other web application that is popping up these days somehow has something to do with Twitter. And why shouldn’t it? Long gone are the days when you had to explain to people what Twitter was, and it has since become a common household name. One of the latest websites catering to the seemingly insatiable Twitter demand is Pluggio, a third party web-based Twitter client you don’t have to download.
Pluggio is entirely web-based, which is great news for netbook users who don’t want to use up precious resources on a Twitter client. And as far as web-based clients are concerned, Pluggio certainly gives the other apps a run for their money. With the free version of Pluggio, you get 150 scheduled tweets and 1000 Twitter API calls per day. You can also add up to 5 different Twitter accounts to follow. Despite capping certain features in the free version, there are a lot of reasons to give Pluggio a try.
Browsing tweets is divided into a series of tabs – under the heading of Twitter Streams. You can browse all your DMs and replies together, browse replies only, or even your own tweets. Other tabs include your received and sent messages, your favourite tweets, and saved searches.
You can also add other Twitter users or lists, essentially bookmarking them for easy access.
One of our favourite Pluggio features is the ability to see which of your tweets have been retweeted and by who.
From any given tweet you can choose to reply to the person who tweeted it, or all people mentioned in it, follow or unfollow users, view profiles, and direct message the user. You can also add the tweet to your favourites, or a user to one of your lists.
When retweeting, you can choose to either edit or add your two cents to the tweet, or retweet verbatim using Twitter’s native retweet method.
One of the major criticisms of Twitter as a service has been how difficult it can sometimes be to follow a conversation, and sadly, Pluggio has not taken this into account, and this is probably the biggest drawback to using their service.
Information included on a user’s profile includes their bio, real name, number of friends and followers and the number of updates. One inaccurate piece of information that seems to be featured on all profiles is the date they joined – all defaulting to December 1969.
Tweeting from Pluggio is easy. Simply click the green speech bubble, and a small window will come up allowing you to type your tweet, shorten links, schedule your tweet, and choose what other services you want to update simultaneously. Another shortcoming is the inability to add pictures directly from within Pluggio.
With Facebook, FriendFeed, Google Buzz and LinkedIn. Once you’ve entered your Ping.fm API, each service that has already been added to your Ping account will be available on Pluggio. You can choose to simultaneously update several services at the same time all the time, or on a case-by-case basis.integration, Pluggio allows you to simultaneously send your update to other social networks such as
Scheduling tweets can be done in one of two ways.
You can add Tweets to a rolling schedule or schedule it for a specific time. The rolling schedule defaults to once every hour, every day of the week, but can be edited to suit your preferences.
Once you have your rolling schedule set up to suit your needs, any tweets you add to it will be listed with the times they are to be posted.
To schedule a tweet for a specific date and time, simply enter the details as shown in the screenshot below.
Pluggio can also suggest new people to follow based on certain criteria that you can choose in the settings. You can add filters of either specific keywords used in tweets, or tweets within a radius of a certain location. These results can be further narrowed down by restrictions on the number of followers/friends, when they last tweeted, or how old their account is.
You can also receive ‘unfollow suggestions,’ if being followed back is an issue that concerns you. All suggestions can also be delivered to you by email. Suggestions for free accounts are capped at 40 per day.
Another unique Pluggio feature is the ability to add RSS feeds from your favourite websites, or specific search terms on Yahoo or Google, and follow them right there alongside your tweets.
A list of the latest blog posts, or search results will be displayed, and from there you can schedule a tweet of the link, flag the story, edit and tweet or retweet instantly. It may not be instantly obvious how to remove an RSS feed or search term. Clicking the feed’s icon will allow you to edit or delete it. With the free version of Pluggio you can only add up to 5 RSS feeds or Google/Yahoo search feeds.
Additional features are the ability to search public timeline, manage your Twitter lists, and Pluggio also has a bookmarklet which you can drag to your bookmarks bar to quickly tweet links you visit in your browser. The site still has a bit of room for improvement, and with the introduction of a few of the missing essential features, it will become a true powerhouse for all your tweeting needs.
Be sure to also take a look at Mahendra’s article featuring 4 web-based Twitter clients that will also come in handy with netbook users.
Have you used Pluggio? Let us know what you think of it in the comments.