Twitter may be planning a standalone messaging app, claims new report

by: Andrew GrushOctober 17, 2013
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There’s certainly no shortage when it comes to mobile messaging apps. WhatsApp, KakaoTalk, Line and Kik are just a few of such apps, but if a new rumor is to be believed, we may soon be adding a Twitter messaging app to the list.

Citing anonymous sources, AllThingsD reports that Twitter is getting ready to completely overhaul its direct messaging feature, going so far as to separate it from the ‘core’ Twitter app. This is a pretty bold change in direction for a company that had previously toyed around with the idea of killing direct messages completely, and eventually settled with just burying the feature deep within Twitter.

That said, it’s not necessarily surprising.

We’ve seen messaging apps explode in popularity in the last year or two, and Twitter likely wants a piece of that pie. Add in the fact that Facebook already has a messaging app of its own and that KakaoTalk was recently listed by as a ‘threat’ in Twitter’s S-1 IPO documentation, and the writing on the wall becomes obvious.

We've seen messaging apps explode in popularity in the last year or two, and Twitter likely wants a piece of that pie.

Twitter is a major deal in the social networking world, but it’s still arguably more for certain ‘kinds of people’ and not a mainstream service. Adding better direct messaging could help change that image and, in turn, could generate additional growth for the social network.

Twitter has already made recent baby steps that show their interest in direct messaging is changing. First, we have the recent (limited) rollout of new feature that allows users to send and receive direct messages without having to ‘follow’ one another first. Second, Twitter has already allegedly met with employees from MessageMe, possibly to discuss some kind of partnership.

While we can’t say we’d be shocked to see Twitter move forward with its plans to create its own messaging app, we feel it’s important to stress that this is an unconfirmed rumor and so speculation is advised.

What do you think, would you like to see Twitter roll out its own messaging app? Or do you feel the company should simply improve its direct messaging capabilities while keeping them as part of the regular Twitter app?