TweetDeck is the undisputed king of all Twitter clients. Originally launching on the desktop in mid-2008, it became an instant hit with everyone from regular social media addicts to corporate social media managers. After versions for iOS, Android and now “ChromeDeck” came out, TweetDeck has consistently been the go-to client and their products are now responsible for over 20% of the world’s tweets.
TechCrunch is now reporting that UberMedia has purchased TweetDeck for somewhere in the range of $25-$30m dollars.
I was never particularly worried about the domination that TweetDeck originally had, because the man who originally created it was just a developer who worked very hard and got very lucky. He then got funding and built a successful organization and recruited other programmers to come work with him. The end result has been a consistently excellent product.
What scares me about the sale, is that UberMedia has been going around buying up Twitter client developers left and right. It’s hard to follow UberMedia’s history because they’ve changed names so many times. At one point they were PostUp and before that TweetUp. When they purchased UberTwitter in January they renamed themselves to UberMedia. They’ve also in the past purchased Twidroid, a very successful Twitter client for Andorid. They also own Echofon, a popular iPhone client and Firefox extension.
Hopefully UberMedia will advance and innovate within the products they already own, rather than just continuing to suck up development shops. A healthy ecosystem of independent development around Twitter is what has helped drive, and what is going to help it move forward in the future. Gathering up more and more resources into one basket makes a lot of people nervous.
It would seem to me that UberMedia competitor Seesmic should be very worried right now, as they’ve had great brand awareness over the years but seem to have to reboot themselves every so often in order to stay moving. There is going to be a need for strong competition in the market going forward, and hopefully that is what will happen.