Twitter is taking the next steps to make its new version of TweetDeck a subscriber-only option, removing the Mac version of the app in favor of the generic web dashboard.
We say goodbye to TweetDeck for Mac app to focus on improving TweetDeck and testing our new preview. July 1 is the last day it will be available.
You can still use TweetDeck on the web, and more invitations to try the preview will be rolling out over the next few months!
— TweetDeck (@TweetDeck) June 1, 2022
As Twitter notes, it’s removing the Mac-specific version to focus on a single platform update – although, as noted, the removal could also indicate its development of a new paid version of the app, which would be accessible through Twitter itself, as opposed to becoming a separate tool.
Twitter has been working on a new version of its tweet management app since last July, when it announced the first stage of beta testing for its “TweetDeck Preview,” which includes updated column layouts, multiple management decks, improved search tools and more.
Since then, Twitter has added various new additions to TweetDeck Preview, including enhanced video streaming. But alongside that, there have also been hints that Twitter is looking to make TweetDeck a paid option, likely integrated into its Twitter Blue offering.
Twitter didn’t directly say this was the way to go, but it did provide some pointers as well.
Back in July when the TweetDeck Preview beta launched, so Twitter product manager Kayvon Beykpour made this note:
“We are exploring how we can give people more personalization and control using TweetDeck. We want feedback on how we can expand TweetDeck’s offerings for those who use it the most. We’ll take these lessons into account when we explore what TweetDeck might look like in Twitter’s subscription offerings later. We’ll have more to share as soon as we learn from these tests.
So, the indications are that eventually when it is made available to everyone, users will have to pay to access the updated TweetDeck.
Which I’m not sure many will do.
While TweetDeck’s preview looks interesting, there aren’t any major, compelling new additions to the app’s functionality, nothing that would suddenly make it a “must-have” platform and justify the extra expense. Especially considering that there are plenty of third-party platforms that offer similar tools. Twitter could make TweetDeck better than all of them, incorporating all their different features, but so far that doesn’t seem to be the direction Twitter is looking to take with the new app.
It could, however, be a lucrative avenue for Twitter to consider. If it were to add high-value business tools, like improved analytics, updated research tools (covering different elements of the app), and more competitor research options, it could probably charge a lot more than the current $3 per month for Twitter Blue, and companies would pay for it.
Twitter reduced its analytics tools in 2020, with the removing its Audience Insights element, and it hasn’t added alternate data options since. If it were to bolster these tools into a new business tier of its subscription offerings, that could be a valuable offering.
But the current TweetDeck preview is little more than a new version of the current free app. Which could make it a pretty tough sell – unless Twitter is still looking to squeeze more in ahead of a bigger launch.
But again, Twitter doesn’t seem to really understand this aspect, at least taking the example of Twitter Blue. Undo tweets, new color options, NFT profile pictures, and a few other tools have generated some interest, but they’re not really worth the monthly fee for the majority of users.
That’s why Twitter Blue isn’t really moving the needle yet. As the company noted in its Q1 2022 report, its subscription and other revenue items brought in $94 million during the period – which is actually a 31% year-over-year decline. on the other.
Note that Twitter Blue launched to US users in November of last year, so really, based on early interest, Q1 should have seen near peak interest in the option.
Clearly, the things Twitter deems valuable aren’t the same as what users are willing to pay for, which could mean it’s actually going to go ahead with this updated version of TweetDeck as a paid offer.
What seems to be getting closer to launch:
Will users care? Probably not, unless Twitter has some big changes in store that it hasn’t added to the preview yet.
Maybe those are coming, but if they aren’t, I don’t see that as a big winner for the app as it works to meet its ambitious growth and revenue goals.