Recently, HASHBANG Productions has been working on an app for iOS devices running iOS 7. You'd know that already if you've been following @AphelionApp on Twitter. This app is (yes, yet another) Twitter client, with the aim of looking right at home in iOS 7's new UI, as well as allowing you to multitask. This is something that's been very lacking in current iOS Twitter clients, and as heavy Twitter users ourselves, this was something that needed fixing.
Twitter's official iOS app initially had an amazing design that people loved to use, from the Tweetie app that, via Twitter's acquisition of Atebits, was the foundation of Twitter's app.
Unfortunately, Twitter had removed the original design of the app in late 2011. The iPad UI remained, however by September 2012, arguably the best app interface design, ever, was gone. Months earlier, I had switched to Tapbots' awesome Tweetbot, so this didn't worry me much at the time. However, in recent months, the urge to find and install a backed up copy of Twitter's old app became greater and greater, and in time I finally found a copy - albeit not the latest with the old UI - and installed it on my devices.
It was great to have an old friend back. Friends also looked for their backed-up copies and installed them. However, over the years, habits and APIs had changed: t.co links came in, requiring the client to transform them into the original link, mute filters were non-existent, and in my case, the only old version I had didn't support pic.twitter.com uploads nor could it show them in its image viewer, upon a few bugs and completely broken features.
Everyone loved the app, but these issues prevented them from being able to use it as their primary Twitter client on iOS.
The answer was clear. Someone had to make a Twitter client that supported these newer features.
With iOS 7 in beta, featuring a new redesigned interface and great improvements to many frameworks, I thought it would be cool to use a 100% native iOS 7 interface; so I immediately fired up Xcode version [REDACTZA] and created a project for Aphelion.
The User Limits
Twitter's insane limit of 100,000 users per-app is of course going to be a major issue. Like many other apps have done, we have had to make our app more expensive than we usually would want to. US$7.99 will be the price once Aphelion is approved by the App Store team. We're hoping to get the app in the store by the time iOS 7 launches.