Twitter’s Updated App Makes Clicking Links More Dangerous

If you’re a Twitter mobile user, you’ll be happy to know Twitter is updating its iPhone and Android apps (again).

But you’ll need to be extra careful about what you click, because one change sacrifices safety for speed.

Twitter’s new search and discover improvements, rolling out Wednesday, are pretty neat. You’ll see changes in Discover, Search, Connect and links – all providing you with a more streamlined and highly integrated experience.

With Discover, for example, you’ll see new previews at the top of the screen and everything will be in one stream, including tweets, activity, trends and suggestions of accounts to follow.

Search offers a similar experience, with one stream sharing “the most relevant mix of Tweets, photos, and accounts.” And “[l]ook for the magnifying glass icon next to the button you use to compose a Tweet” to search anywhere within the app.

And finally, Connect now defaults to Interactions (showing new followers, retweets and mentions) and you can choose to view only mentions by switching the default settings.

The best update though – and the most dangerous for careless users – is to the links. Shortening the experience from two clicks to one, when a user clicks a URL in a tweet now it will take you directly to the website.

What’s dangerous about that?

Well, if you’re used to clicking a link to see a preview of what something was first and THEN clicking to go to the site, that option will not longer exist.

Links from many legitimate places automatically auto-expand with a mini-preview anyway, but many do not. So if you don’t know what you’re clicking, joke’s on you!

This will encourage smarter online habits, most likely. Nothing encourages caution like a nasty virus crashing your computer. And the Twitterverse will be better off once we (collectively) break that ‘clicking everything in site’ habit anyway.

What changes would you like to see Twitter implement next?

(Danger image from Shutterstock)