With the substantial increase in the Twitter popularity in a relatively small time frame many developers has come up with the client applications in Windows to interact with the Twitter. Same happened in the realm of the Firefox extensions as these days there is no shortage of the Twitter clients for the Firefox. All of these extensions differs widely in terms of GUI and the features they provide as well as in their ease of use.
Actually last week I was looking for a nice Twitter client that allow me to keep a tap on all the updates and posts directly from the Firefox interface rather than to launch another application such as TweetDeck. Some of the clients that I investigated were good but I was annoyed by the interface design issues such as some of them added a toolbar in the Firefox (as if the toolbars already available in Firefox were not enough!). They feel annoying and cover too much of the screen area in my opinion. While some other clients used the sidebar to show the interface. It was less annoying but still it occupies too much valuable real estate. After some search I found a Twitter client called Echofon that turned out perfect for my needs.
Echofon basically adds a button to the status bar in Firefox after the installation. Clicking the button brings the main interface to the front. Main screen is split in to three different tabs. First tab shows the tweets from the friends while the second one shows any messages with the mention. Lasts tab shows the direct messages with any other user. All the tweets are shown in a visual timeline as someone might expect. Popup window can also be resized by mouse dragging from the corner. At the bottom there is a text box to enter the message you want to tweet. Besides the text box a button is available to insert the URL of the current page you are visiting in Firefox (in currently active tab) in the message. Status bar icon shows the no. of unread messages. Frequency of the updates can be adjusted through the settings panel. Besides the above mentioned core features graphical interface provides easy way to retweet a message or to reply to a tweet. An IPhone application is also available and if installed allows to read all the unread tweets there but I haven’t tested it.
Echofon is a very nice Twitter client and has a cleaner interface as compared to many other Twitter clients available for the Firefox. Despite its apparent simplicity it is highly functional and supports all important features that might be required by the avid users of Twitter . In particular, I like the design choice of showing a popup window that appears at the bottom (from status bar) rather than using a toolbar or sidebar to show the main application interface.
Echofon for Firefox can be downloaded from here.
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