Third-Party Twitter Apps Such as Twitterrific, Tweetbot Stop Working for Reasons Unknown

Image: The Iconfactory

Many third-party clients for Twitter, including Twitterrific, Tweetbot, Echofon, Fenix, and Talon, have stopped working since Thursday evening.

The issue has hit Twitter clients for all platforms, from iOS and Android to macOS. Tweetdeck, however, remains unaffected at the time of writing. Some Twitterific users also reported being able to still use the app on macOS.

Affected Twitter clients are unable to communicate with the Twitter API and keep throwing back errors, but the root cause of the outage is as-yet-unknown.

“Last night at about 7:30pm PST, Twitterrific customers started reporting problems accessing Twitter via the iOS app,” The Iconfactory, the company behind the iOS- and macOS-only Twitter client Twitterific, said in a blog post.

“There’s been no official word from Twitter about what’s going on, but that’s unsurprising since the new owner eliminated the employees dedicated to keeping the API up and running smoothly, including the developer evangelists who previously provided communication with third-parties,” The Iconfactory continued, citing new Twitter owner and CEO Elon Musk‘s decision to lay off over half of the company’s workforce.

This could be a deliberate move from Twitter — the platform has been struggling to hang on to ad revenue, and third-party clients take a bite out of that by peeling eyes away from the official, ad-serving Twitter app. There was a similar motivation behind Twitter’s December decision to outlaw the “free promotion” of rival social networks on its platform.

The fact that apps that access the Twitter API but aren’t full-fledged Twitter replacements continue to work and aren’t broken further points to this being a calculated change on the company’s part.

That said, this could still simply be an issue with the Twitter API. We’ll have to wait to hear from Twitter to find out exactly what’s going on.

Earlier this week, Twitter overhauled the UI for its iOS app and forced all users to switch to an algorithmic “For You” feed.