Twitter continues to grow at a massive pace, adding the unbelievable figure of 460,000 new users each day to its database. As many of us increase the number of accounts we follow, it can be quite difficult to see through the clutter. In order to solve this problem a few startups have taken on the challenge to make reading your tweets easy again.
With different algorithms and solutions they try to filter out the most valuable Tweets for you. This means you don’t have to spend time scanning your stream for the best content. Here are 5 of these greatest tools that aim to take out the hassle of reading tweets:
Smartr makes reading the news easier with a focus for your mobile phone. The iPhone App takes your Tweets and provides you in return with a beautiful stream of the most valuable articles only. This means you will be freed from foursquare check-ins or other tweets that don’t add value to your timeline. The fact that it displays page previews gives you an even better overview to read updates from the people you follow.
Tip: Smartr has integrated sharing options for Instapaper and also makes it super simple to email articles to your contacts.
A recent discovery of mine is StrawberryJ.am. The App takes all your tweets and orders them by most mentioned. This means that with just one glance you will be able to see the most discussed content from your Twitter stream. A focus on UX and beautiful design makes browsing through the news very simple. You can also set up a daily update with your top news that will be delivered straight to your inbox.
As the App is still in beta there are 200 invites available for TheNextWeb readers with the invite code: “TNW”
Tip: You can also set up search terms or hashtags and let StrawberryJ.am order them for you by most mentioned.
An even more minimal approach to showing you top news in your stream is taken up by the team at Summify. The App takes your most mentioned tweets and displays the top 5 articles of the day on one page. The interesting part is that this is a public page and you can go ahead and share it with your friends and followers. Here you can also feed your Google Reader updates into Summify on top of Twitter and Facebook.
Tip: What keeps me using Summify is the receipt of a daily digest email. Knowing beforehand that it will be the top 5 articles simplifies my life.
Similar to the Apps mentioned above, XYDO takes the content from your social network accounts and creates a newly curated stream based on popularity of news. On top of the popularity of updates on Twitter or Facebook, XYDO goes one step further. In Digg style, the App allows you to upvote or downvote in order to make the stream even more relevant for you and others. I also found that XYDO’s daily digests are very helpful.
Tip: XYDO also turns into a complete news network, by providing you with categories and topics you can browse through.
The most recent discovery of mine is an App called Twylah, which fits this list nicely. With a slightly different approach, the App aims to make reading our tweets a lot easier too. After signing up, the App automatically creates a custom fanpage for you. Your Tweets will be ordered by topics through the Apps algorithm and also displays media rich content.
Tip The app allows you to send “Power Tweets”. Those are tweets showing a certain link you have tweeted as a preview together with other related content. This is measured to increase engagement.
Another very interesting solution to curate your news is made available by Scoop.it. The App allows you to pull in your Tweets and display them based on manual or automatic selection. What I find very interesting is that you can also suggest topics for the curator, if you believe an article or piece of content you read would fit.
Tip: Your curated page can be displayed publicly and used, similar to Twylah, as a means to reshare your top tweets in a nicely visualized form.
TweetMag is a beautifully designed Ipad App, that might remind you of the popular Flipboard. Your tweets are pulled in and displayed in simple magazine style. Once you decide to read an article, the App gives you the option to display it in a simple and clutter-free way. What comes in handy is the integrated Tweet Later ability so you can read tweets, even whilst offline.
Tip One thing that I particularly enjoyed is that you can search for hashtags or other topics you are interested in and get the a new magazine based on your terms.
Another interesting solution to display your tweets is coming from Utopic. The App focuses heavily on giving you an intuitive, visual experience to consume your Tweets. On top of connecting your Twitter account, you can also feed in your Facebook and YouTube channel in order to have everything in one place. You can also browse interest from your friends very easily.
Tip: What I like is the pre-filtering into different categories, such as links, videos, music or images as it facilitates browsing a lot.
One of my personal favourites to read tweets is coming from LazyScope. The App pulls in all your tweets and offers you a preview on all links. Now, if you decide that one article is worth reading, you can simply click it and it pops up. There is no reloading or leaving the stream. This is an amazing way to stay focused on tweets, yet consume news.
Tip: LazyScope also allows you to follow other sites, which are non-Twitter sites as they are suggested below posts. To me this is overall a very thought-out experience.
Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning Flipboard. You can connect lots of different social networks to the app and it automatically creates a beautiful magazine for you, similar to TweetMag. Apart from Social feeds, you can also choose to read news sources of your choice. The intuitive interface to scroll through articles makes for a great reading experience.
Tip: What I love about Flipboard is the focus on displaying each content type, such as videos or photos in a new format to make flicking through more enjoyable.
I believe that these apps definitely help solve a growing pain. The wealth of information shared on social networks and especially Twitter can easily become overwhelming. Having these apps guiding us to find the best pieces makes life a lot easier.
How about you? Do you think these apps can be helpful? Or do you know of any other tools and tips to deal with information overload?
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