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Tapbots and the state of iOS8

Since iOS8 was released this week, we wanted to give you a quick update on where we are with things. Tweetbot 3 for the iPhone will be submitted soon. We are finishing up our work fixing bugs and optimizing features for iOS8 and also want to test on the new devices before submitting. This will be a free update for Tweetbot 3 customers.

Next, we wanted to state that Tweetbot 3 for the iPad is in development. However we are also trying to get some of our other apps updated as well so progress has been slower than expected. We are excited to share that two of our older apps will be updated for iOS8 (iPhone/iPad) and debut for the first time on the Mac (Yosemite)! We will update you when we get closer to launch. Thanks so much for your patience and support.

Mandatory Tweetbot Update for v2.8 and v3.3

A couple weeks ago Twitter’s Platform Operations group contacted us and asked us to make a small change to the way Tweetbot communicates with the Twitter API. This change will have no affect on the way Tweetbot works, however two things will occur once this change goes live. All versions of Tweetbot prior to 2.8.8 or 3.3.2 will stop working and you may need to log into your account again. So make sure you are running the latest versions of the app and be prepared to authenticate your account once more. We will be coordinating with Twitter to make the final change on May 29th at 10 A.M. PST. Stay up to date via our @tweetbot account. Thanks for your continued support!

Tweetbot 3 for iPhone is Here

First of all, thank you so much for all of your patience (read this if you were wondering what took so long). It’s been a long road for us, but we are happy to introduce the completely re-imagined Tweetbot 3 for iOS7. We hope you love it as much as we do. We’ve been getting a lot of questions over the past few weeks. Here are answer to some of the more popular ones:

Will Tweetbot 3 be a Free Upgrade or a New App?

Tweetbot has been out for two whole versions and we’ve updated it for years, never charging for an update. We spent 5 months re-designing TB3 completely for iOS7. It is definitely not just a “reskin”. The whole foundation of the app has been improved upon and you can tell that it doesn’t just look different, it feels really different (and for the better). Charging for this version not only helps pay for all the work we have done on it over the last few months, but it also allows us to keep working on version updates in the future.

What About the Token Limitation (User Cap)?

A little over a year ago, Twitter implemented user caps on all 3rd party Twitter clients. This means there’s a finite number of copies we can sell (we wrote about this a year ago here). The bad news is nothing has changed on this front. We are still have a limited number of tokens. The good news is while TB3 is a new app, its still uses the same pool of tokens as TB2. So if you are a current Tweetbot for iOS user, you won’t be using up a new token when you run TB3.

What are the new features in TB3?

The biggest new feature in TB3 is the much improved interface and overall experience. We really spent a lot of time fixing little problems in the old app that most of us just got used to. Little things like it now only takes two taps to settings instead of three. And we changed the whole navigation stack so you can quickly switch to a search result view in one tap from the timeline instead of two. We moved the list timelines to the list tab so you can switch between your main timeline and a list timeline in one tap instead of two.

We added lots of physics-based animations and gestures which not only improve the overall experience, but make you feel more in control of your actions. Done looking at an image view? Just flick the image away in any direction.

While there’s a lot of new stuff packed into TB3, our list of actual new features are still on our to-do list and you’ll see many of them roll out over the next few months. Don’t worry, we have a lot of great stuff coming in the pipeline.

Evolution in Design

iOS7 is a huge evolution in terms of design. While the aesthetics is subjective, it’s hard to disagree that overall it is a pretty huge upgrade. That was our goal for TB3. Our primary goal as a company is to create beautiful apps that are a joy to use. That foundation has not changed one bit. TB3 feels like it belongs on iOS7 and it is undeniably a much better app than TB2. We focused heavily on the content and experience. I dare you to use TB3 for a week and then try going back to the old version. Then you’ll know exactly what I am talking about.

Tapbots and the State of Our Apps in iOS7

When the iPhone 5 was released a little over a year ago, our apps began to look a little…short. Most of our apps are designed specifically for the original iPhone size. Apps like Weightbot, Convertbot, and Calcbot needed to be completely re-thought and redesigned for the new aspect ratio. Pastebot is full of custom UI so while it would be easier to convert to the 4″ screen size than our other apps, it still needed lots of work. We made the smart business decision to keep our focus on Tweetbot for Mac. We haven’t abandoned our older apps, but we have to make tough decisions that keep our business running. We already have many great ideas for the updates to our older apps and are just waiting for the right time to implement.

Seven months ago, we started working on a big update for Calcbot. We were hoping to release it sometime in the summer. Two months in, Apple announced iOS7 at WWDC. We knew this was a huge change. It would make every single one of our apps look dated so we had to make sure our flagship app was ready for it. All of the design work that went into the Calcbot update was rendered obsolete in one keynote and so we focused our energy on updating Tweetbot for iPhone. Playing with the beta of iOS7 over the next few weeks brought us to the realization that this would not just be a “re-skin”. We really had to just start over with the new foundation and concepts of iOS7.

We were aiming for the iOS7 launch date, but unfortunately we didn’t make it. We’ve been working night and day for the last 4 months to re-design and develop an app that took over a year to build. The good news is that we are extremely happy with the results and can’t wait to share it with everyone.

Now that you know what we have been up to over the past months, here’s where we are today. We’ve just submitted Tweetbot for iPhone to the app store and are waiting for approval. We do not have a launch date yet because there are many other things that need to be in place and ready before we launch, but it will be soon. That is all that we can say at this point. We truly appreciate your patience and support on this and know that it will be worth the wait!

Tweetbot for Mac is Finally Here!

We are very happy to announce that Tweetbot for Mac is finally available for sale on the Mac App Store! It’s been a long (and bumpy) road, but we are glad we have finally made it to the 1.0 milestone. This is our first official Mac App from Tapbots (unless you want to count Pastebot Sync), and thanks to Todd Thomas for all his hard work, we have something to be proud of. But it doesn’t end here. We are working on version 1.1 and have much more coming to all versions of Tweetbot.

For now, learn more about Tweetbot for Mac and purchase it on the Mac App Store.

Why is Tweetbot for Mac $20?

If you think about it, it’s not that expensive. Twenty dollars for a quality piece of software that you use every day? That has been the price point for quality utility apps on the Mac for years. However, it’s not just the development time and attention we put into the app that commands the higher price.

Because of Twitter’s recent enforcement of token limits, we only have a limited number of tokens available for Tweetbot for Mac. These tokens dictate how many users Tweetbot for Mac can have. The app’s limit is separate from, but much smaller than, the limit for Tweetbot for iOS. Once we use up the tokens granted to us by Twitter, we will no longer be able to sell the app to new users. Tapbots will continue to support Tweetbot for Mac for existing customers at that time.

This limit and our desire to continue to support the app once we sell out is why we’ve priced Tweetbot for Mac a little higher than we’d like. It’s the best thing we can do for the long term viability of the product. We know some will not be happy about Tweetbot for Mac’s pricing, but the bottom line is Twitter needs to provide us with more tokens for us to be able to sell at a lower the price. We spent a year developing this app and it’s the only way for us to be able to make our money back and continue supporting it with updates in the future. Feel free to let Twitter know how you feel about it.

If you’ve used the Alphas/Betas and have decided not to purchase, please do us a huge favor and Revoke access; that frees up extra tokens for potential customers (the betas will expire anyways). We truly appreciate your support whether you make the purchase or not. You guys have been a great help during the beta process.