Audio tweets are one of Twitter's latest features, and if you've got an iPhone, we can show you how to use them.
At the moment, audio tweets are a limited test for iOS users, so you might not see this option straight away. There is no word when – or if – the feature will come to Android.
For a long time, Twitter was a text-based service – you could even send tweets via SMS. Over the years, however, things developed and the ability to post GIFs, photos and videos gave users more flexibility. More recently, Twitter made it possible to send longer tweets, and the latest addition to the micro-blogging/social network platform is the ability to send audio tweets – or voice tweets as Twitter calls them.
At the moment, the feature is only available to iOS users, so anyone with an iPhone has a new way of expressing themselves online. They're also perfect if you have a lot to say, but don't fancy the idea of typing out huge reams of text. The idea is a simple one: you can record whatever you want to say using your phone's microphone, and it can be tweeted as an audio-only video.
By default, audio tweets are limited to 140 seconds, but don't worry if you can't cram everything you need to say into two minutes and 20 seconds. If your recording goes over the limit, Twitter will automatically split it up into a number of tweets for you. Here's how to get started with this great feature which gives you a more expressive way of saying what you want to say.
1. Access tweet recording
The first thing you will need to do is to make sure that you have the latest version of the Twitter app installed. Open up the App Store, tap the icon for your account and grab any updates that are available. Now fire up the Twitter app and tap the button in the lower right of the screen to compose a new tweet. You should see a new purple soundwave button next to the camera button and recent images – the first time it appears, it will be highlighted in the app.
2. Record a tweet
When you tap the soundwave button, you'll be taken to new screen that shows your profile image at the top, and a red record button at the bottom. The first time you press the record button, you will have to grant the Twitter app permission to access your microphone – just hit OK – and then recording will start immediately.
3. Pause or finish recording
Unless you have a script of what you plan to say, you may find that you want to pause recording, gather your thoughts and then continue. This isn't a problem at all: just hit the pause button that's replaced the record button. When you're ready to start recording again, just tap record once more. You will notice that as you are recording, a progress bar fills up indicating how much of the 140 seconds you have left. You will also see that as your microphone picks up your voice, shaking circles appear around your profile image as an indicator.
4. Preview and post audio tweets
If you change your mind about a recording you're making, you can hit Cancel to the upper left at any time. But when you want to post what you have record, tap Done to the upper right and you'll be taken back to the tweet composition screen. You can preview what you've recorded by clicking the play button that's embedded in the tweet composition screen, and add introductory or explanatory text above if you like. When you're happy, hit the Tweet button
5. Record longer audio tweets
As we mentioned above, it is possible to send audio tweets that are longer than the default of 140 seconds. When you reach this 'limit' you can just keep recording and Twitter will break up your tweets into a thread. The thread can be up to 25 tweets long, meaning that you could – in theory – record up to 3,500 seconds of audio (just under an hour!) When you record longer tweets like this and tap Done to finish recording, the thread will be created automatically. Simply hit Tweet All to post them.
6. Listen to tweets
When you browse through your timeline, you'll be able to spot audio tweets because they feature a central profile image on a large, plain colored background with a play button on top. The profile image is animated, just like it was when you were recording, and playback is as simple as tapping the play button. While audio tweets can only be recorded on iOS, they can be played back on any device.
7. More about audio tweets
There are a few extra things to note about voice tweets. The first is that they can only be attached to 'original tweets', meaning you can’t use them in replies, or if you retweet something and add a comment. The second is that if you change your profile picture, the one you had at the time of the recording will still be used as the image for its image – it will not refresh.
- Check out our guide to the best iPhone apps