Micro blogging site Twitter is experimenting with a new version of its Android app that removes @ replies entirely. Vivian Schille, Twitter’s Head Of News hinted such a possibility at a recent event.
According to reports, Schiller recently stated that hashtags and @ replies are “arcane,” while speaking at the Newspaper Association of America’s mediaXchange conference in Denver. She hinted that they may be removed soon from the service to provide a more ‘streamlined’ approach to help new users understand the concept of Twitter.
Schiller has since down played her comments, but a recent screenshot from the alpha version of Twitter for Android suggests that @ replies may be removed in favor of Facebook-like mentions, although it is only an experiment at this point and there is no suggestion that regular @ mentions are affected.The thinking behind the change is that new users may find Twitter easier to understand with the removal of the @ replies and hash tags, but loyal users are quite likely to protest against such changes.
Twitter currently has 241 million monthly active users, an increase of just 3.8% over the previous quarter. In its financial results of the fourth quarter, the micro blogging site has registered a decline in its user base which earlier grew at 10% in the beginning of 2013.Twitter's advertising revenue was $220 million an increase of 121% y-o-y.