BrandArena: Twitter Introduces Group Direct Messages, Mobile Video Experience

Wednesday 28 January 2015

Twitter Introduces Group Direct Messages, Mobile Video Experience

Twitter announced last November that it had a number of new features on its roadmap for this year, and today the social network says two of those features are starting to roll out to users.

In a post on Twitter's official blog, product director Jinen Kamdar explained the importance of direct messaging on the social network. Kamdar sees private conversations on Twitter as a perfect complement to the public tweets that can be read on the platform.

"Tweets have been more than 140 characters for some time. The Twitter you experience today is rich and immersive, full of images, gifs, Vines, audio files and videos from some of the world’s most recognizable figures and brands. And starting today, everyone will soon be able to seamlessly capture, edit and share videos right from the Twitter app, too.

"We designed our camera to be simple to use so you can capture and share life’s most interesting moments as they happen. In just a few taps you can add a video to unfolding conversations, share your perspective of a live event, and show your everyday moments instantly, without ever having to leave the app. Viewing and playing videos is just as simple: videos are previewed with a thumbnail and you can play them with just one tap", Kamdar wrote.

The design of Twitter's video camera is made simple to allow users to quickly set it up to capture moments that are most valuable and interesting to them, in videos that can be as long as 30 seconds.

Users will only need a few taps to include video to their conversations and tweets, allowing users to upload videos on instances such as their perspectives in live events without getting out of the Twitter app. Users can also preview the videos by tapping on their thumbnail before attaching them to the message or tweet.

Twitter will also have an inline editing feature that will allow users to drag and drop videos to rearrange them into one longer video. The videos that can be included, in addition to what was taken through the Twitter app, can come from the camera roll for iPhone users. This feature will also be coming to Android users soon.

Today's announcements aren't particularly surprising in the context of Twitter's evolution – in fact, many would argue that Twitter is late to video sharing and group messaging – but they absolutely make sense when you consider the modern Twitter product as a whole. Twitter has long moved past the point of text-based tweets displayed in a traditional timeline, and these two new features add on top of other changes that will likely stay exclusive to Twitter's official app ecosystem.

The very first tweet sent out using the mobile video camera was from Oscars host Neil Patrick Harris, and the feature will now be accessible to all other users on Twitter.

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