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M.G. Siegler Rants About Twitter’s New ‘Explore’ Tab

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Last October, Twitter began testing out an enhanced version of its “Explore” tab on its iOS app, giving users access to trending topics and simplified search. On Thursday, Twitter rolled out the new “Explore” tab for all iOS users.

Twitter said that the tests from last October went really well and users were pleased with the simplicity of the new tab. On Friday, Google Ventures General Partner M.G. Siegler wrote an extensive post explaining why the “Explore” tab is “awful”.

“First of all, its placement in the navigation is atrocious. Those of us who are power users are beyond frustrated by the old switch-a-roo to place ‘Explore’ exactly where ‘Notifications’ used to be. One of our most-used tabs was replaced by this new nonsense. Each accidental click is a new circle of hell.¹

For new users, presumably who this change is targeted at, this new ‘Explore’ tab is now visually indicated to be the second most important tab in all of Twitter. And yet, it’s populated with mostly uninteresting junk.

On paper, ‘Explore’ should be great. Search, after all, is a core component of Twitter because it is filled with great content. But Twitter should be surfacing that content for us. Search is a power tool.”

Firstly, Siegler said that the navigation placement in the tab is terrible, especially if you are a power user. On paper, Siegler said that the “Explore” tab sounded like a great idea, but Twitter just completely failed to execute.

“The cynic in all of us can’t help but wonder if this is now front and center simply because Twitter is selling ads against it…”

In the post, Siegler ponders different reasons as to why Twitter didn’t realize that this was an awful idea.

I often think about not using Twitter as much as I do simply so I can get the ‘While You Were Away’ summary at the top of my feed?—?or even better, a ‘Highlights’ notification when I’ve been away for a long while. The delight of these features is matched only by the ridiculousness of how buried they are. This should be its own tab. Let’s call it ‘Pulse’ or something. It really is the pulse of the planet, especially in the era of Trump.

What do you think of the new “Explore” tab? Let us know in the comments below.

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  • Joe

    I used twitter for about 5 years, but I stopped at the end of 2016.

    The app was trying too hard to sell ads and did a poor job of showing me tweets I care about. Sounds like the new Explore tab made it even worse.

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