Following the chaotic takeover of Twitter by Elon Musk, an open-source alternative to Twitter- Mastodon is getting all the attention. This kind of attention attracts regular Twitter users that are looking for a new platform, but the interesting part is that third-party developers are doing the same. Some of those developers are behind some of the most popular Twitter clients – Aviary and Tweetbot.
Mastodon – Getting Ready to Take Over
Ever since Elon Musk took over Twitter, the social media giant had a decline in active users. However, looking at Mastodon and its numbers before and after Musk’s takeover, we notice significant growth. Mastodon went from 655,000 to somewhere between 3.3 and 3.6 million active users in this short period.
Mastodon aims to become closer to Twitter as their new client that is in development looks to bring a similar setting. Its users might truly find a worthy alternative for Twitter in this “fediverse” – as they call the servers that power Mastodon and other apps.
Regarding third-party developers, Mastodon already boasts a significant number of their own apps, such as Mercury, Mastoot, Mast, Tusky, Toot!, Tootle, Metatext, and others in addition to the official app. The developers behind these apps have more initiative to focus on them than ever, thanks to the influx of new users.
Twitter users will be glad to hear that app makers such as Tapbots, known as the creators of Tweetbot, will also be focusing on Mastodon. The newest version, Tweetbot 7, had many interesting new features, such as picture-in-picture, widgets, and a stats tab. The excellent news for Mastodon is that the platform will soon have a similar product developed and beloved by many ex-Twitter users.
Paul Haddad, one of Tapbots’ developers, stated that the company lost important contacts as Musk’s Twitter terminated up to 5,500 of its contractors while some simply left on their own soon after. Further, Haddad says they haven’t experienced any disturbance regarding the Twitter API itself, noting a few minor bugs appearing after Musk took over.
Upcoming Important Mastodon-Related Apps
Stating that they wish to address a large demand for a similar app by those that left Twitter for Mastodon, Haddad announced that they are working on a similar app to Tweetbot.
The new app has a name – Ivory. Those who used Tweetbot will likely miss the features it provided, something that Tapbots strives to bring to Mastodon via Ivory. Key features such as navigation buttons to your user profile, timeline, friends, mentions, and similar will be a welcome addition to Mastodon.
Those that wish to compose a new post using Ivory will be clicking on a small horn, as posts on Mastodon are referred to as “toots.”
A welcome feature for many is the option to mute entire topics and never see them on their feed again. Something that those who are tired of hearing about Twitter and Musk will find helpful. This is relevant now more than ever, as hate speech on Twitter has skyrocketed recently.
There are also aspects in which Ivory will differ from Tweetbot. For example – it won’t show the number of boosts (Mastodon’s retweets) or any similar metric such as the number of comments or favorites on a post that appears on a timeline. This is done with the agenda of removing screen clutter, albeit some users might miss the features.
Twitter users that did not feel the need for a change don’t need to worry about the future of Tweetbot just yet, Haddad said they will be developing both Ivory and Tweetbot together as they share similar code.
Shihab Mehboob, another third-party app maker, announced that he had begun his work on a Mastodon app called Mammoth. His previous well-known work is Aviary, a popular Twitter app. Mehboob said that his app will be a paid download and include the latest Mastodon API at the time of release in addition to 4.0 features like editing posts and history. He hasn’t determined a price yet, but he added that he will also release a Mac and iPad version of the app.
On the other hand, The Iconfactory, another popular third-party app maker, still hasn’t decided if they wish to devote their time to Mastodon. Having lost their contacts at Twitter, the company decided to observe the development of this situation before deciding.