Twitter’s new subscription service costs the same as a cup of coffee a month – though much less stimulating

Twitter Blue only works properly on iOS and just one feature is useful


First Look Twitter has announced its first subscription service.

“Twitter Blue” gives subscribers 30 seconds in which to undo a Tweet and offers the opportunity to bookmark Tweets and place them in folders and has a new “Reader mode” said to make long threads of tweets more readable. Subscribers can also change the colour of the Twitter icon on their iOS devices and pick a colour scheme for the app.

The service is iOS-only for now, but Twitter has promised its Android app will catch up soon and may offer subscribers some Twitter Blue features already.

The micro-blogging service is testing Twitter Blue in Canada and Australia. And as the latter nation is where your correspondent resides, I shelled out the AU$4.49 (US$3.44) monthly fee required to take it for a spin.

My sole iOS device is an iPad, so I start at a small disadvantage given its not quite the device for all-day Tweeting.

I’m nonetheless willing to assert that Twitter Blue is not going to be a hit.

The Undo Tweet feature is really a countdown timer that lets you view a post before you fire it off. I quite like that idea as my Twitter output does contain the occasional typo. But as Reg colleagues pointed out; I could just remind myself to spellcheck tweets before I send them instead.

Reader mode was impossible to find. Changing icon and app colour schemes is such trivial functionality that it’s not worth further comment. Bookmark folders? I’ve been on Twitter since March 2007, and I was not aware of its Bookmarks function until I started writing this article. Folders for Bookmarks are therefore not very useful to me. I just email myself links to Tweets that matter.

After a working day as a Twitter Blue member I felt the Undo Tweet feature is the only one with any value. Yet as noted above, it can be replicated with a little discipline.

To make the service worthwhile I feel Twitter should bring its features to the web and to its TweetDeck client as well as its apps, as the power users I know spend more time there than on mobile devices.

Twitter promises it is “building out even more features and perks for our subscribers over time.”

It needs to, because the AU$4.49 monthly price of a Twitter Blue subscription is a cent less than what I pay for my morning coffee. That beverage is infinitely more stimulating, nourishing and satisfying than Twitter Blue. Indeed, days without my morning coffee are a little bleak. But I’ve already cancelled my Twitter Blue subscription. ®

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