Tired of using the standard Twitter app that’s officially from Twitter? Don’t worry, you have plenty of third-party choices out there, Echofan, Tweetbot, Twitterific, Tweetdeck, and Tweetcaster, and honestly, they are all junk. I have finally found the best possible third-party Twitter app out there….Slices.
Slices is the newest third-party app available to download for free out at the app store and it is far and beyond better than all other options, the official Twitter app included.
First of all, like I said, it’s free so that’s already a plus and grabs most people’s attention. Second, most people probably think, “oh well this app can’t be as well-integrated as the official Twitter app that connects with your iPhone.” Well guess what, it’s just as well-integrated into the iPhone software as the official Twitter app is.
When you download the app and start it up, it automatically installs your default Twitter account from your phone, no password or anything required. Just select the account, hit done and BAM, installed and ready to roll.
There are a lot of things I really like and think are cool with this app. One thing that sticks out when you use it is when you compose a tweet, one of the attachments you’re able to add is music.
You have the ability to either tweet the name of the song your listening to or the actual song itself. When you tweet a song it provides a link that brings you to that song right in iTunes so you can buy it and download it which is cool but I think it would have been better if you could listen to the song off some sort of music player online. Either way it’s a pretty cool feature because you can at least get a demo of the song off iTunes and then instead of spending the money on a song, just take the name of it and go download it using whatever software you use to download music.
Another cool feature of this app is called “slices,” go figure. What this basically is, a way to categorize the people you follow. For example, I follow a bunch of business reporters and technology reporters, well the app made a category or a “slice” in the app called “business” and another called “tech & science.” That way when I want to see all the business news I can just go right to my business slice and get nothing but business tweets, or whatever my slice was designated as. When you first download the app it’s nice because it automatically takes the people you follow and makes slices accordingly, and if you need to change it at any point there is an option for you to manage or add more slices.
Easily one of the best features of this app is the “explore” section. This section of the app is above and beyond other third-party app’s, especially the official Twitter app, in terms of how in-depth you can explore.
The official Twitter app’s version of explore is weak. All it does is provide a few hot topic issues to follow, but you’re at the mercy of what Twitter thinks you would be interested in. With Slices, you can explore pretty much anything you can imagine. You can see what’s trending, or “featured” events, or even explore news tweets, local tweets, humor tweets, family tweets, travel tweets, you name it and you can find a category in explore that will have tweets about it.
Ever want to be able to follow live tweet’s of an event but you only follow like one or two people who would actually be tweeting relevant information about it? Well say no more because now you can, because that’s also an option in the explore section. Just click on “live events” and several options of live sporting events pop up, for example right now the categories are 2012 Summer Olympics, baseball, NASCAR sprint cup, and MLS. Click on 2012 Olympics and you get live tweets from anyone, not just people you follow, about Summer Olympic events.
Another thing that’s cool about the live events is if you click on say baseball, you then get a list of every game that is being played at that current time and when you click on it, you get nothing but up to date tweets from people about that game. Best thing is, most of the tweets are reporters or people who have insight to the game, not just kids being like “wow the braves suck this year #gotigers,” because when I want live updates on events, I want facts and information, not people complaining and bashing on teams, I have my own personal timeline for that with people I actually know to amuse me.
The last cool feature of this app is the “home” button on every section you’re in. What this little guy does is provides and alerts you when new tweets come in from your home timeline. When you click on the button it doesn’t just bring you back to your home timeline screen, it opens a little window that you can scroll and see all the new tweets you missed out on while you were exploring in other sections. I thought that was pretty awesome because if I want to see what the new tweets are while I’m exploring I don’t have to go back and forth between sections, so that’s a real nice feature.
Besides those major things everything else in this app is pretty fantastic, I can’t bash it too much. It does all the little things well, like allowing you to add multiple accounts to the app and switch between them easily, tweet to different accounts or more than one account at a time from the compose screen, and it brings you back to where you left off if you leave the app. Besides those things the app is very user-friendly and all it takes is about five good minutes to figure out how to navigate around the app, which by the way, looks just as nice as it works.
Unfortunately I can’t just come out and say this app is perfect with no flaws because that’s just not true. One issue for me is that the screen scrolling up and down can be a little laggy, it’s in no way terrible but it’s not as smooth as the official Twitter app that I’ve grown accustomed to. Another small issue is that every once in a while the app crashes. Now I know when people hear “the app crashes every once in a while,” they are going to run for the hills because there aren’t many things more irritating than crashing apps but since I’ve been using it that has been fairly rare and will get fixed over time, it’s still a relatively new app.
Another issue to go along with the laggy screen movement and the rare crashing is the fact you get no alert badges on the app to notify you when someone mentions you or favorites a tweet of yours. This is a fairly decent sized issue I have for this app because why wouldn’t people want to be notified when other people are trying to interact with you on Twitter?
The last major issue that I have with this app, and a lot of third-party twitter apps in general, is when I go to compose a tweet and I want to mention someone, it has a hard time bringing up the person I am looking for. For example, I want to tweet at my friend Frank, and I know the first few letters of his Twitter name, so I begin to type the letters and a list of possible name’s comes up for auto-completion and he isn’t an option. I don’t understand this and it really aggravates me. How does it give me all these different options, and options of people I don’t even follow, but it doesn’t give me the one person I’m actually trying to mention. This is a major problem in my mind but luckily the only real major flaw of this app.
There is no perfect Twitter app out there, only a few good ones and even fewer really good ones but overall, the Slices app is much better than all the other choices out there. If you want functionality and cool feature, use Slices, but if you’re looking for just an app to read tweets from your followers and post tweets, the official Twitter’s app is more than sufficient to do that. If Slices can fix those few flaws I mentioned in an update soon then I wouldn’t be shy to proclaim Slices the king of the Twitter application world, leaving all other apps as peons.
If you want to download the free Slices app, just click here.
Let me know what you think, and don’t forget to follow us @digitalwhistle0 for updates on posts and anything technology or entertainment.