Twitter Tests Photo Filters in New iOS, Android Apps; Trends in 100 More Cities

Twitter is reportedly building in its upcoming update of iOS and Android mobile app set to released during holidays "new Instagram-like photo filters."This move makes sense - as photo sharing apps have exploded and with Instagram (now part of Facebook), saw a record high "over ten million photos posted on the day of Thanksgiving."The move […]

Twitter is reportedly building in its upcoming update of iOS and Android mobile app set to released during holidays "new Instagram-like photo filters."

This move makes sense - as photo sharing apps have exploded and with Instagram (now part of Facebook), saw a record high "over ten million photos posted on the day of Thanksgiving."

The move comes in the context of Instagram turning off "Twitter Cards," the functionality which showed Instagram photos properly inside the Twitter stream, leading to cries of "The Photo Wars" kicking off.

With acquiring Instagram and integrating into the news feed, Facebook is clearly benefiting. And, Google+ also launched a photo-editing app "Snapseed." With all these, Twitter appears to have realized the potential of these high end photos feature and looking to fill the void.

Among the other, one feature that is abuzz is Twitter lifting from EyeEm's app - allow a simple swipe of the screen to change filters.

Twitter hasn't commented on the rumors yet.

Here's a video of EyeEm's app in action:

Twitter employees appear to be testing new versions of the apps, just look at the two images below shared "via Twitter for iPhone," you may notice a subtle difference between the app used by the employeed showing of the use of filters from those used by the public:

Left shows a Twitter employee's tweet, right a user of the most recent Twitter for iPhone app (via):

Twitter shows off photo filters in beta of iOS and Android apps

Twitter also introduced Trends to 100 more cities around the world. With this update, "we now surface the 'most breaking' news in more than 200 locations," the company posted, adding "We'll continue to add Trends locations so that it's easy for more people to quickly see what others are talking about, globally and locally," Twitter said.

To view Trends for different locations, just click "Change" in the Trends section.

Twitter Trends in 100 more cities around the world

We'd like to share some upcoming changes to our t.co link wrapper with the ecosystem.

The company announced of extending the maximum length of t.co wrapped links "from 20 to 22 characters for non-https URLs, and 21 to 23 characters for https URLs."

"This change won't go into effect for two months - so, ensure that your application is prepared to handle this change by the date," Twitter wrote.

"On February 6th, 2013, the GET help/configuration method will start to return the updated values for the length of characters returned in the following key-value pairs: "short_url_length": 22, "short_url_length_https": 23. And, two weeks later on February 20th, 2013, we will begin generating and returning t.co URLs with this new maximum length," the company added.

As a developer working with Twitter's platform, you have a lot of moving parts to stay on top of. In the past few months we've announced new APIs, deprecated old APIs, added endpoints and additional data to responses, changed SSL certificates, and made a host of other changes. Keeping track of all the dates and details can be painful.

To keep the developers abrast, Twitter launched a new timeline of API announcements

"We're releasing a page on this site which aims to answer "what API changes are coming up in the future" and "what API changes have recently happened". So if you need to remember the sunset date for API 1.0, or when we changed the Sitestreams SSL certificate, now you need only reference dev.twitter.com/calendar," the company blogged.

"You'll be able to see planned timelines for upcoming changes, and get links to the appropriate announcements. You'll also see when previously announced changes went live. It's about as cool as a non-chocolate-filled calendar can be," added Twitter.

Lastly, the Vatican announced that Pope Benedict XVI now has his own official Twitter account. "The Pope's presence on Twitter can be seen as the 'tip of the iceberg' that is the Church's presence in the world of new media," said Vatican.

Twitter implementing pushState for twitter.com to improve the performance.

With this change, "users experience a perceivable decrease in latency when navigating between sections of twitter.com; in some cases near zero latency, as we're now caching responses on the client," Twitter stated.

"Despite the usual browser inconsistencies and other gotchas, we're pretty happy with the HTML 5 History API."

"Our implementation has enabled us to deliver the fast initial page rendering times and robustness we associate with traditional, server-side rendered sites and the lightening quick in-app navigation and state changes associate with client-side rendered web applications," added Twitter.

Check this official post providing an overview of the pushState API.

Twitter also blogged about the reports of SMS spoofing its U.S. users accounts vulnerable to a spoofing attack because PIN protection is unavailable for them. "The problem involved the ability to post false updates to another user's SMS-enabled Twitter account."

Twitter explains, that "Most Twitter users interact over the SMS channel using a "shortcode." In the US, for instance, this shortcode is 40404. Because of the way that shortcodes work, it is not possible to send an SMS message with a fake source addressed to them, which eliminates the possibility of an SMS spoofing attack to those numbers."

By having a shortcode, "PIN protection isn't necessary for US-based Twitter users, because they are not vulnerable to SMS spoofing."

However, "in some countries a Twitter shortcode is not yet available," and in those cases Twitter users interact over the SMS channel using a "longcode." A longcode is basically just a normal looking phone number. Given that it is possible to send an SMS message with a fake source address to these numbers, we have offered PIN protection to users who sign up with a longcode since 2007. As of August of this year, we have additionally disallowed posting through longcodes for users that have an available shortcode," Twitter added.

Pope Benedict XVI will answer questions from both believers and non-believers via his Tweets, the Vatican said, adding, "It is hoped that the Pope's short messages, and the fuller messages that they seek to encapsulate, will give rise to questions for people from different countries, languages and cultures."

While the account is live for people to follow (he's using the handle @pontifex) the Pope won't actually be posting any Tweets of his own until December 12.

Pope Benedict XVI Joins Twitter @pontifex