Twitter has just rolled out a new version of their website for mobile devices. The redesigned mobile web app makes use of web technologies like HTML5, which is supported on devices like the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android based smartphones.
Twitter is initially rolling out the new version of their mobile web app to a small percentage of smartphone users.
Twitter explains the reason for releasing a new version of their mobile web app:
This web app allows us to provide a high-quality and consistent Twitter experience on high-end touchscreen devices – whether or not an official Twitter application is available. It was built from the ground up for smartphones and tablets, which have more advanced browsers that support the latest web technologies, including HTML5.
The app is fast – you can quickly scroll through your timeline, move between tabs and compose Tweets. It’s rich – it takes advantage of capabilities that high-end device browsers offer, such as touch gestures and a large screen. And it’s simple – it’s easy-to-use and has the features you’d expect from a Twitter application, including your timeline, @mentions, messages that you can read in conversation view, search, trending topics, lists, and more.
Twitter’s decision to build the mobile web app from ground up is intriguing as it already has a native application for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch in the App Store (iTunes link), which is very popular. We wonder if this has anything to do with the backlash directed at Twitter when it rolled out a new version of the Twitter app with QuickBar, which floated at the top of the Twitter timeline and displayed the latest trends, including promoted trends. Twitter was ultimately forced to remove it.
Twitter is probably looking at using the redesigned mobile web app as a way to experiment such changes to limited number of users and get feedback from them rather than exposing it to a larger user base like iOS device users.
If you want to check it out, point Mobile Safari browser to twitter.com to see if you’ve access to the new web app and let us know if you prefer to use the mobile web app or the native application.