Twitter has been undergoing quite a few changes in the past week or so. With their CEO, Dick Costelo stepping down. Today, the company announced on their blog that Twitter will now autoplay videos, Vine’s and GIFs in the timeline. That’s going to get annoying real quick. We dislike ads autoplaying when we open up a new web page, imagine Twitter where you’ll likely have multiple videos. However, the videos, GIFs, and Vine’s will be muted. Once you tap the video, the sound will turn on and you’ll view it in an expanded view. According to their blog:
“Once you tap the video, sound will turn on and the video will continue to play in an expanded view. If you turn the video to landscape mode, the sound will automatically turn on and the video will expand to fill the screen.”
One of the bigger concerns for users, especially on capped data plans will be the bandwidth. Luckily you can turn off autoplay in settings. You can either turn it off completely – which is what most will probably do – or you can set it to autoplay only when you are connected to WiFi, which is a good idea. Even though many ISP’s are now doing data caps as well. If you are connected to a slow network, which is typical for those in developing countries, Twitter will automatically opt you out of the feature. Another good idea.
So the autoplay videos may not be our favorite feature, and it definitely is one borrowed from Facebook. But it looks like Twitter is doing a good job at implementing it. Allowing users to turn off the autoplay, and not having the sound autoplay. The feature is currently rolling out to the web, so if you use Twitter.com, you should be seeing this update in the next few weeks. It’ll be hitting Android, iOS and Windows Phone apps in the near future. There’s a big chance that third-party Twitter apps won’t have this feature though, unless their users really want it. However, Twitter could force developers to use it, they’ve already crippled the API for developers.