I’m pretty picky when it comes to my Twitter clients of choice.
After signing up first, of course, on Twitter.com, as pretty much everyone did back in the heady days of 2008, I moved on to TweetDeck, then Seesmic Desktop, before eventually settling on HootSuite.
That’s just on the desktop, of course. On my mobile, I went from Twitter mobile, to TinyTwitter, to Dabr (that link is worth a look just to see what we had to put up with in 2009), to UberTwitter (Blackberry), HootSuite (iPhone), the official Twitter app (iPhone) and then Tweetlogix (iPhone), the latter of which I heartily recommend to all and sundry.
I also tried Tweetbot on my iPhone, too, but for some reason never took to it. Which is strange, as it’s far and away my favourite iPad Twitter app. Just gorgeous and super slick. And now it’s out on Macs, officially, I really, really want it.
Except it’s $19.99. And that’s a lot to pay for any Twitter client.
But is it too much? Let’s take a look.
First impressions: it’s beautiful. Check it out.
Lovely. Except, without parting with that precious twenty, I can’t actually experience what it’s actually like. So first impressions are all that I have. And, I fear for many, that means shelling out for Tweetbot is just too much of a risk.
Tapbot, who create Tweetbot, have written about why they’ve had to charge twenty bucks for a third-party client on their blog. Basically, it’s all Twitter’s fault. And it kind of is.
If you think about it, it’s not that expensive. Twenty dollars for a quality piece of software that you use every day? That has been the price point for quality utility apps on the Mac for years. However, it’s not just the development time and attention we put into the app that commands the higher price.
Because of Twitter’s recent enforcement of token limits, we only have a limited number of tokens available for Tweetbot for Mac. These tokens dictate how many users Tweetbot for Mac can have. The app’s limit is separate from, but much smaller than, the limit for Tweetbot for iOS. Once we use up the tokens granted to us by Twitter, we will no longer be able to sell the app to new users. Tapbots will continue to support Tweetbot for Mac for existing customers at that time.
This limit and our desire to continue to support the app once we sell out is why we’ve priced Tweetbot for Mac a little higher than we’d like. It’s the best thing we can do for the long term viability of the product. We know some will not be happy about Tweetbot for Mac’s pricing, but the bottom line is Twitter needs to provide us with more tokens for us to be able to sell at a lower the price. We spent a year developing this app and it’s the only way for us to be able to make our money back and continue supporting it with updates in the future. Feel free to let Twitter know how you feel about it.
We hear you boys, loud and clear. But still… twenty dollars. It’s the same amount of money I parted with for my entire operating system (Mountain Lion). And it’s not our fault that Twitter is screwing you over here. So why should we have to pay? Wouldn’t it have made more sense to mid-price the app ($10 or even $5) and prove to Twitter you deserve more tokens because it sells like the proverbial hotcake?
Check out the comments on the Tapbot post to see the reaction from fans. As you might expect, many are disappointed at the asking price, although several have already coughed up. At $19.99 this is far and away the most expensive Twitter app on the market – many quality alternatives are available for free, although to be fair there aren’t too many standalones on the Mac – and my gut tells me that, while their reasons might be valid, even justified, we might see a discounted rate or two for Tapbot appearing on the app store within the next month or two. A Christmas special, perhaps.
In the meantime, and if you can’t resist those gorgeous, gorgeous images, you can buy Tweebot for Mac right now here.