Is Twitter Still Trending? – Predictions And Thoughts

Posted in Social Media, Web Design2 years ago • Written by 14 Comments

Twitter is a multilingual online social network created in 2006. Twitter works as a micro-blogging service which allows users to send messages (known as tweets) of 140 characters or less. It has now more than 350 million members and is generating over 300 million tweets per day. Twitter is a great source for finding hot news and can also display a “live feed” for your preferred #hashtag so finding really hot news about any topic can be really easy. Twitter is also called the SMS of the Internet.

How did it begin?

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The work on Twitter began in 2006. The original name for Twitter was twttr, a Flickr-inspired 5 character name which would stand for the American SMS short code length (which is exactly 5 characters). The first Twitter prototype was used by Odeo to whom it belonged to at the time. In October 2006, Jack Dorsey, Even Williams and Biz Stone acquired Odeo, including Twitter.com. Twitter spun off into its own company in April 2007. In 2007 Twitter was only a little popular in the US, having about 20,000 tweets per day. Twitter’s popularity exploded during the 2007 SXSWi event when the number of tweets reached 60,000 per day. This was the beginning of  Twitter-mania. Many bloggers present at the conference spread the word and Twitter reached 400.000 tweets per quarter in 2007 and 100 million tweets per quarter in 2008. This amazing evolution has made Twitter another extremely influential social network on the internet. The whole world was on Twitter and in 2010, Twitter already had 50 million tweets per day and 70,000 registered Twitter applications. As of March 2011, there were about 140 million tweets posted daily and about 1550 tweets each second. Twitter was the third social network.

Twitter at the Moment

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The Twitter we see now is not much different from a few years ago. Since September 2010, the company started rolling out “The New Twitter”, probably the biggest update they have made to the social network since its inception. The New Twitter was improved a lot, some of the changes being: New Photos/Videos viewing possibility, a complete overhaul of the interface and a new “top usability bar” which allowed users to perform actions easier and faster. Twitter also released Mac, iPad and iPhone Twitter clients which are all available free of charge. The company we see nowadays is the one which has over 6 hundred employees  who tend to serve a community of more than 350 million users. Twitter was the first place which hosted live messages and photos sent from NASA Astronauts. Besides Astronauts, Twitter is widely used by many country presidents and celebrities. You can find Barack Obama, Vladimir Putin as well as Oprah Winfrey on Twitter. They’ve probably decided to use Twitter as their social network to interact with the people as it’s one of the easiest to use networks available right now. While Facebook’s dominance is evident over Twitter, I doubt that any celebrity will go to Facebook. On Twitter they are limited to 140 characters and they don’t have to write whole novels to impress you.  This year has started very good for Twitter. They have agreed to a partnership with a Russian search engine, Yandex, which was interested in Twitter’s real time news feeds. On March 21 Twitter celebrated it’s sixth birthday, stating that it has now 340 million tweets per day, which is an extremely amazing number, compared to 20,000 tweets per day they had in 2007.

Twitter vs. Facebook

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Facebook is without any doubt the biggest and the most influential social media network currently. It currently has an Alexa rank of 2, losing just 1 position to Google. Besides being the most influential social media network, along with Google it is one of the most visited websites in the world. They have 845 million members which is about 1/9 of the total world population. Facebook is used for interacting with friends and family members, chat, sharing photos and occasionally playing a game. I wouldn’t say that Facebook is a direct competitor to Twitter. While Twitter allows you to share photos and videos and have a small public conversation, it’s still not Facebook. You can keep your Facebook page and all your activity private. Twitter also allows you to do this, but the number of people using this is extremely small, so small that it could even get removed as a feature and hardly anyone would notice. When someone decides to register an account on Facebook, I don’t believe they wouldn’t register a Twitter account if they need one. Facebook and Twitter are different, and that is why they can’t “hopple” each other on their way to success.

Future of Twitter

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Over the past 6 years, Twitter has evolved as no one expected. It got more than a half thousand employees, a community of more than 100 million members and a revenue of about $140 million — revenue for the year 2011. While all this may look like really surprising and great, who knows how the company’s progress will look like in a few years! Take a look at a few possible Twitter predictions.

Prediction #1

Twitter will follow the MySpace example. Maybe this is a “gloomy” example, but that is something we should really consider and admit. Both were social networks, both had fast growth, both of them allowed you to hide your identity, both allowed you to create as many accounts as you wished. The most important association between these two is the race for the followers. The more followers you have, the better, the cooler and more awesome you are. There are already hundreds of bots and paid services which are ready to add to your account thousands or even hundreds of thousands of followers for money. That’s where the spam and fake users come. There are no exact numbers on how many fake users there are on Twitter, but I believe for every real user, there is another verified fake one and about 5 unverified fake accounts. MySpace has devalued from a company priced at about $20 billion to only $30 million in a few years. Twitter can also face this problem if they don’t change their views on the identity policy and the user registration policy as well.

Prediction #2

Twitter will go a step further. Twitter will still be a prosperous company which will grow. For this, they will have to do some serious policy updates and also improve their security. As we all know, Twitter was and probably still is the aim for many hacker attempts — many of them being successful. Twitter will have to introduce some more changes which would make their users even more engaged. Twitter isn’t known for buying many start-ups or medium-sized companies, but maybe they should start? Who knows what goldmines are hidden under the rocks of those small but very promising start-ups!

Prediction #3

Twitter will be bought. That is the last prediction I can make for Twitter as a company itself. If this is going to take place, I see this happening in the next 2-3 years. I don’t believe Twitter will be bought by another social media network like Facebook. It is possible for Twitter to be acquired by Google, but most probably it will be Microsoft. Microsoft still doesn’t have any social media network to compete with Google or FB (Windows Live is no match, let’s admit it). Google Plus is doing pretty good and in my opinion, Microsoft won’t be able to build something of their own. They are great at building software, but building a successful and most importantly, unique social network is hard, that is why Twitter may seem like a good opportunity for them. I believe Microsoft is the company which will be able to get rid of those security branch issues and change the registration policy as well. They could even use Twitter for promotion of their own search engine, Bing. With the recent purchase of Skype, it looks like Microsoft is aiming for some nice and promising “business birds” available, and Twitter can’t be an exception.

Conclusion

At the moment, Twitter is a medium-sized but fast growing company. It has an amazing potential to grow and improve their service for the users, but it faces a few problems which make it lose comparing to other social networks. It has uniqueness and that is why it is still alive and will be for many years, but in order to build an amazing, long-lasting company, the heads of Twitter will have to rethink a few details about their website functionality.

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14 Comments Best Comments First
  • Rendy

    Tuesday, April 17th, 2012 19:12

    1

    You make several good points about Twitter, especially with relation to your future predictions. While Twitter needs to maintain it’s core appeal, it also needs to continue to innovate and add functionality if it wants to remain relevant. Great post.

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 07:06

      6

      Yes, that’s right, I hope Twitter doesn’t make any mistake like Digg did by innovating too much :)

      0
      • Maria Wendt

        Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 18:23

        11

        I agree, Dainnis, Digg pretty much ruined themselves with too much innovation! Great post, by the way. I am pretty sure Prediction #1 (Twitter will follow the MySpace example.) will happen. Thanks!

        0
        • Dainis Graveris

          Thursday, April 19th, 2012 04:45

          12

          You never know, i would like to see that happening, I was a bit too new to fully experience Myspace crash :)

          0
  • Verner

    Tuesday, April 17th, 2012 22:53

    2

    Well the real problem with Twitter (as Conan stated) is:

    1. It doesn’t use paper.

    2. It happens to quickly.

    http://mashable.com/2012/04/01/conan-obrien-manual-twitter/

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 07:04

      5

      Hello Verner, haha, that was so funny April prank :D Yes, paper problem is really serious issue, good point!

      0
  • Steven

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 06:19

    3

    I think Twitter is already mainstream and most people already knows about it but not all jumps to start using it like it’s with Facebook.
    I think Twitter is here to stat as Facebook and Twitter have different purpose so Facebook won’t take it over.

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 06:53

      4

      Thanks for reply Steven, it’s interesting what’s going to happen, did you notice that G+ stream now looks like a mix of Facebook and Twitter? The question was if Twitter will still grow, if something new won’t show up, then definitely Twitter hasn’t reached its glory days.

      0
      • Steven

        Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 09:47

        8

        Google+ right now is the best social network when it comes to simplicity, search, sharing, speed & reliability and mobile app. But the problem is users. There is only small ACTIVE user base compared to Facebook and/or Twitter.
        I think Twitter could have problems in future as it haven’t done much over the years to improve their service. They have introduced new design, url shortener and picture sharing. So nothing very exciting here compared to Google or Facebook. And their servers still gets overloaded and there are many other unexpected errors while Google has been number one place to check if you are connected to internet since 1998. It’s something no other services can be proud of.
        I don’t think Twitter is the weakest player between these three but there are still enough hipsters to give power to it.

        0
        • Dainis Graveris

          Thursday, April 19th, 2012 05:25

          14

          Steven, also about Twitter not changing, that’s their strong side, I will mention again Digg which was working..and they innovated.. And then look at Reddit, where design looks like from 2005 but it works because of not innovating there, but just being resource to count on.

          Let’s see, Google+ is taking place as well, interesting how their domination will turn out.

          0
  • Maneet Puri

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 09:22

    7

    SMS of the Internet very well said. Twitter is a platform that allows u to express things in a precise and meaningful way!

    0
  • Akon maxi

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 11:06

    9

    I think Twitter is here to stat as Facebook and Twitter have different purpose so Facebook won’t take it over.

    0
  • Sarah

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 12:46

    10

    I think that Twitter will need to help potential users get over that intimidation hump before entering the mainstream. I speak with so many business owners who are apprehensive to start a Twitter account for their business because they feel like “they have nothing to say” on Twitter. Many people are also concerned with sounding self-absorbed. However, I try to explain to the Twitter-shy that the medium is meant for much more than personal notifications. Sharing information and commenting on current events is all possible via Twitter.
    Thanks for the article!

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Thursday, April 19th, 2012 05:23

      13

      Good point Sarah, the same way is all those social networks, and personal notifications would be great heh, too bad I cannot afford that to my account :)

      0
  • Sarah

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 12:46

    10

    I think that Twitter will need to help potential users get over that intimidation hump before entering the mainstream. I speak with so many business owners who are apprehensive to start a Twitter account for their business because they feel like “they have nothing to say” on Twitter. Many people are also concerned with sounding self-absorbed. However, I try to explain to the Twitter-shy that the medium is meant for much more than personal notifications. Sharing information and commenting on current events is all possible via Twitter.
    Thanks for the article!

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Thursday, April 19th, 2012 05:23

      13

      Good point Sarah, the same way is all those social networks, and personal notifications would be great heh, too bad I cannot afford that to my account :)

      0
  • Akon maxi

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 11:06

    9

    I think Twitter is here to stat as Facebook and Twitter have different purpose so Facebook won’t take it over.

    0
  • Maneet Puri

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 09:22

    7

    SMS of the Internet very well said. Twitter is a platform that allows u to express things in a precise and meaningful way!

    0
  • Steven

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 06:19

    3

    I think Twitter is already mainstream and most people already knows about it but not all jumps to start using it like it’s with Facebook.
    I think Twitter is here to stat as Facebook and Twitter have different purpose so Facebook won’t take it over.

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 06:53

      4

      Thanks for reply Steven, it’s interesting what’s going to happen, did you notice that G+ stream now looks like a mix of Facebook and Twitter? The question was if Twitter will still grow, if something new won’t show up, then definitely Twitter hasn’t reached its glory days.

      0
      • Steven

        Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 09:47

        8

        Google+ right now is the best social network when it comes to simplicity, search, sharing, speed & reliability and mobile app. But the problem is users. There is only small ACTIVE user base compared to Facebook and/or Twitter.
        I think Twitter could have problems in future as it haven’t done much over the years to improve their service. They have introduced new design, url shortener and picture sharing. So nothing very exciting here compared to Google or Facebook. And their servers still gets overloaded and there are many other unexpected errors while Google has been number one place to check if you are connected to internet since 1998. It’s something no other services can be proud of.
        I don’t think Twitter is the weakest player between these three but there are still enough hipsters to give power to it.

        0
        • Dainis Graveris

          Thursday, April 19th, 2012 05:25

          14

          Steven, also about Twitter not changing, that’s their strong side, I will mention again Digg which was working..and they innovated.. And then look at Reddit, where design looks like from 2005 but it works because of not innovating there, but just being resource to count on.

          Let’s see, Google+ is taking place as well, interesting how their domination will turn out.

          0
  • Verner

    Tuesday, April 17th, 2012 22:53

    2

    Well the real problem with Twitter (as Conan stated) is:

    1. It doesn’t use paper.

    2. It happens to quickly.

    http://mashable.com/2012/04/01/conan-obrien-manual-twitter/

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 07:04

      5

      Hello Verner, haha, that was so funny April prank :D Yes, paper problem is really serious issue, good point!

      0
  • Rendy

    Tuesday, April 17th, 2012 19:12

    1

    You make several good points about Twitter, especially with relation to your future predictions. While Twitter needs to maintain it’s core appeal, it also needs to continue to innovate and add functionality if it wants to remain relevant. Great post.

    0
    • Dainis Graveris

      Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 07:06

      6

      Yes, that’s right, I hope Twitter doesn’t make any mistake like Digg did by innovating too much :)

      0
      • Maria Wendt

        Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 18:23

        11

        I agree, Dainnis, Digg pretty much ruined themselves with too much innovation! Great post, by the way. I am pretty sure Prediction #1 (Twitter will follow the MySpace example.) will happen. Thanks!

        0
        • Dainis Graveris

          Thursday, April 19th, 2012 04:45

          12

          You never know, i would like to see that happening, I was a bit too new to fully experience Myspace crash :)

          0

Comments are closed.

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