Twitter pulls plug on TweetDeck for Android, iPhone

Twitter says it will also end its integration with Facebook as the companies compete for advertising clients

Twitter will end support for TweetDeck on the iPhone and Android in order to focus solely on browser-based versions for those platforms. And it is also apparently dumping Facebook.

TweetDeck, a popular application that was acquired by Twitter in May 2011, lets users manage their Twitter activity and multiple accounts by dividing feeds into columns.

Twitter also said it will end support for Twitter AIR, which uses Adobe's runtime to extend the capabilities of web-based applications on the desktop. It will still support standalone clients for Windows and Mac OS X.

"In many ways, doubling down on the TweetDeck web experience and discontinuing our app support is a reflection of where our TweetDeck power-users are going," the company wrote on its blog.

Twitter said it has focused for the last 18 months on its web application for browsers as well as an application for Google's Chrome OS. Web applications allow developers to roll changes out faster, as people do not have to manually update applications on their computers or devices.

New capabilities will be added to Twitter's web application first, then rolled out to its Windows and Mac clients, Twitter said.

Twitter warned that TweetDeck for Android and the iPhone will be removed from applications in stores in early May and will stop functioning a short time later. In the meantime, however, the applications may not function properly, Twitter said.

The three TweetDeck versions to be retired all rely on version 1.0 of Twitters API (application programming interface), which Twitter is phasing out.

The company has embarked on an aggressive campaign to roll out new features, which in the past few weeks have including improvements to its search algorithm, changes to how search results are displayed and new tools for advertisers.

In the blog post, Twitter also said it will "discontinue support for our Facebook integration."

Twitter had allowed people to push their Twitter messages to their Facebook profiles. Facebook currently allows people to link their profile to Twitter, which lets people push Facebook status messages to Twitter.

The separation isn't surprising given that Twitter and Facebook are both in intense competition for social networking advertising clients.

In a similar move last July, Twitter said it would not allow content posted on its service to automatically flow to LinkedIn, the professional networking service that also allows people to post status updates.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

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