22 October 2013

Twitter starts rolling out recommendations in the mobile apps

About a month ago, announced it will start to send users personalized recommendations when multiple people in your network follow the same user or favorite or retweet the same Tweet via its mobile apps on iOS and Android. It looks like this new feature made it’s way to my account as well (one of them at least), with a push notification received earlier today recommending a tweet that got a lot of retweets from the people I follow. Taping the notification will, of course, open up the tweet in the app; curiously, this tweet is not featured anywhere else in the app, in the ‘Discover’ or ‘Connect’ tabs for example. Other people noticed similar notifications, as discussed, naturally, on Twitter. Twitter iOS recommendations via push notification

It’s hard to judge the relevancy of this new type of recommendations based on a single tweet – I didn’t found this one interesting, but others praise the feature. I like the concept, but I think it needs more than just promoting tweets because they are popular in your network, that’s usually a recipe for mediocrity. It will probably feel very annoying to power users who follow lots of accounts and receive too many notifications as it is, but for casual users it can become a nice way to nudge them back to the app and make them interact more with their network. After all, Twitter is not exactly mainstream, and with the upcoming public filing they need all the growth they can get. In any case, it’s easy to turn off if you don’t find them useful, just a quick trip to the Twitter app settings, where you need to toggle off ‘Recommendations’.

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