TweetMag is a new content aggregator based around Twitter users, lists and hashtags. It focuses on one of Flipboard's features (tweets as content) and expands that concept further. What TweetMag does is look for tweets that include links, then displays them in a magazine format. It starts by creating a 'magazine' out of your own Twitter account, but also offers a collection of popular Twitter users and lists in categories such as Entertainment, Art & Design and Music.Seems like every new media iPad app these days wants to be a magazine.
Each twitter user or list you see in the app is referred to as a "TweetMag" - that is, its own magazine. So the Music Biz list for example, a list of Twitterers in the music business curated by @vehementflame1, is essentially a unique magazine within the TweetMag app.
Like the other media iPad apps we've looked at this week, NewsMix and Flipboard, TweetMag is visually slick and a pleasure to use. It is however often slow to load new items. "Fetching articles from Twitter - this will take a few moments" is a screen message you'll need to get used to. And if a particular Twitter account or list hasn't tweeted any links for a while, you may get no content at all!
Beyond Magazine Format on iPad
The iPad is a visual, design-friendly platform and so the magazine format has been a perfect fit for it. But is it being overdone by new media applications like TweetMag?
We've already discussed at length the impact Flipboard had over 2010. Modeled heavily after the magazine, Flipboard was the first and is still the best iPad media aggregator. Like all innovators and first mover products, Flipboard quickly attracted copycats and apps that used it as a template from which to build something new. TweetMag is the latter, because it does offer something fresh. It's potentially a very handy tool for organizing all of your Twitter lists and favorite Twitterers - at least the ones who link a lot.
I like what Flipboard, NewsMix, TweetMag and others are doing. They make content a pleasure to browse and read - and find, via social services like Twitter.
Still, I'd like to see more innovation in content aggregators on the iPad. There is a lot that can be done with video, for example. Newsy shows the potential for video aggregators on the iPad, by offering up short 2-3 minute summaries of top news stories. That's innovative and new for the iPad. And it's not a magazine.
Are there any other interesting media iPad apps that you like, that are doing something different to the magazine format?