Twitter Still Clinging To This “Simplicity” Thing When It Comes to Competition

Chris CrumSocial Media

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Remember earlier this year when Twitter CEO Dick Costolo talked about how Twitter is all about simplicity, and that’s what the company sees as its advantage in competing with Facebook and Google+.

As you may know, Twitter has put out a redesign again, already abandoning what was commonly referred to as “new Twitter”. Now it’s “new new Twitter”.

At LeWeb in Paris, Twiter’s Director of Ryan Sarver pretty much said more of the same, with regards to the new design. Frederic Lardinois quotes him:

Talking about the story behind the New-New Twitter, Sarver pointed out that “in a world where Facebook and Google are competing on features, Twitter wants to focus on being simple.” The new version, says Sarver, is all about being fast and easy to use. Twitter, said Sarver, learned a lot from its last update. Expanded tweets, for example, was a path Twitter went on with the last update, but it didn’t drive any major engagement and needed to be rethought in this new version. In this context, Sarver also stressed that this redesign is just the beginning for Twitter.

Really? The beginning? I think it’s a little late for that, honestly. I’m not saying Twitter can’t get better and continue to thrive, but let’s stop playing this “the beginning" card. Twitter has been around for years, and has gone through multiple leadership changes and designs. It came out in 2006. That's just three short years after Myspace.

Twitter is indeed, becoming more like Google+ and Facebook in some ways, and the new brand pages certainly drive this point home. That’s not to say that Twitter is the only one getting more like it’s competitors. Facebook, Twitter and Google+, you might say, have borrowed ideas from one another. Either way, all three continue to get more and more alike in terms of features offered.

Twitter certainly is the simplest of the three in terms of lack of features. Time will tell if this is a good thing or bad thing, but Twitter has certainly been launching more features throughout 2011.

Recently Facebook upped its character limit for status updates. If Twitter does that it will definitely be a sign of the times, as the 140 count has been a staple of what Twitter’s been about from the beginning. If that changes it will be harder to buy this “simplicity” thing.

Chris Crum

Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.