Third-party Twitter app “paused on purpose”, still no public announcement

On Thursday evening, third-party Twitter clients stopped working in what many believe was intentional. The report now confirms that this was the case.

As The Information reported today, a senior Twitter engineer revealed this week that “the suspension of third-party apps is intentional.” Other internal messages (Slack) seen by the post show that Twitter is working on “approved discussion topics” for partners, but it’s not clear when they’ll be ready. This exchange of information that third-party customers have revoked access took place on Friday morning, and it is not clear if this information is intended for the affected third-party developers or advertisers.

Since then, Twitter, including the usually vocal Elon Musk, hasn’t announced any third-party app removals. The company does not have a PR team, and the developers of these clients were also kept in the dark and resorted to their own posts to clarify the situation.

The information notes that “the majority of Twitter employees, including most of the people working on Twitter’s development platforms” have been laid off.

For a while, third-party Twitter clients were considered a “user interface development playground” and coincided with the advent of smartphones. After this period expired, Twitter was locked down and limited the number of users customers could have, causing new applications to cool off. The goal of introducing users to Twitter through the official apps was the same as it is today, but Twitter never completely blocked access. Prior to Elon Musk’s acquisition, Twitter’s relationship with third-party developers improved with new features for the API.

In the future, it’s unclear if this introduction of third-party apps will return, as revenue and advertising are the main engine of Musk-owned Twitter. The CEO is said to be personally endorsing the changes and has announced a number of upcoming experience changes designed to boost engagement. The settings make sense from a UX standpoint, but whether it’s enough to keep people on the social network in light of other things, like a slight increase in ads, remains to be seen.

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