Twitter is finally resurrecting the chronological timeline.
Soon, users will see a button on their timeline that allows them to switch between seeing the most recent tweets and top tweets.
It’s sure to be a welcome change for many users who protested the algorithmic timeline, which Twitter moved to in 2016, and shows ‘the best tweets first.’
Scroll down for video
Twitter is finally resurrecting the chronological timeline. Soon, users will see a button on their timeline that allows them to switch between seeing the most recent tweets and top tweets
HOW DOES TWITTER’S ALGORITHMIC TIMELINE WORK?
In 2016, Twitter changed the way posts show up on users’ timelines by showing ‘the best tweets first.’
Instead of displaying tweets in reverse chronological order, or from newest to oldest, it uses an algorithm to surface certain tweets at the top of users’ timelines.
Twitter chooses them based on the accounts users interact with most, tweets they engage with and other things.
There’s also a section called ‘in case you missed it,’ which includes a collection of tweets around a topic it believes users might be interested in.
The social media giant announced the update in a tweet late Wednesday.
‘Sometimes you want to see the latest Tweets, first,’ the firm wrote.
‘We’re testing a way for you to make it easier to switch your timeline between the latest and top Tweets.
‘Starting today, a small number of you will see this test on iOS,’ Twitter added.
A preview of the feature shows a sparkle icon in the upper right corner of the timeline.
When users click on it, it gives them the option to toggle between two different types of timelines.
Choosing to view it based on top tweets will organize posts on the timeline based on things like accounts users interact with most or tweets they engage with.
Switching back to latest tweets will show posts based on recency.
It’s unclear if or when Twitter will roll this feature out to all users, but it seems probable that the firm will at some point.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey asked users how they felt about the feature in a tweet and many responded that they preferred to switch to a reverse chronological view.
‘Something we’re testing: fast switch your timeline between reverse chronological (latest) and algorithmic (top),’ Dorsey tweeted. ‘Tell us what you think.’
With the new tool, now users can choose what type of timeline they’d like to see and switch between the two if they want.
Many seemed pleased by the feature, with one user tweeting: ‘Nobody wants algorithmic ever, Jack.’
Another said: ‘The best of Twitter is the moment now, I think the idea of making tweets in chronological order is very good. Follow many people, the timeline is crazy.’
The feature itself isn’t actually new, as users can toggle between these views by going to their Settings.
In September, the firm gave users more control over their timelines by letting them turn off the ‘Show the best tweets first’ button.
This displays tweets in reverse chronological order instead of based on the algorithm.
When it announced the move, Twitter said it had been planning to launch new timeline controls for users.
Users have repeatedly called for Twitter to bring back the chronological timeline, which it got rid of in 2016 when it introduced the algorithm-based timeline.
Its algorithms inserted, often annoyingly, tweets people ‘might have missed’ or ‘liked’ by people they follow, which led to some people missing important or timely tweets.
WHAT ARE THE RECENT TWITTER UPDATES?
In September Twitter announced is testing Facebook-style replies and status indicators that show you who is online.
The update colour-coordinates replies to make response threads easier to navigate, while new status lights shine green to indicate you are logged on.
The changes, only available to a select number of trial users for now, are part of the social media giant’s efforts to make its platform ‘more conversational’.
In August Twitter built a new tool that suggests people to unfollow on its social network.
The firm says the feature is designed to help users remove accounts from their timeline they rarely interact with, creating a ‘more relevant’ experience.
It was tested by the social media giant on a small batch of users but it is not known if or when it will be rolled out.
Also in August, Twitter started banning a huge number of accounts, with many users taking to the site to bemoan the loss of hundreds of followers in a single day.
The cull had such an impact on numbers that the ‘Twitterverse’ was swept with the hashtag #TwitterPurge.
It marks the latest in a string of moves from the site to clean up the platform as the San-Francisco based firm now places a premium on integrity among its users.
In June Twitter overhauled the way users tune into live experiences on the app, particularly the Explore and Moments tabs in its app.
This included putting breaking news at the top of a user’s timeline. Moments also showed multiple timelines divided into recaps, commentary and live tweets.
It also made it easier for users to identify political campaign ads.
They created the ‘Ads Transparency Center’ which allows anyone to view ads that have been put on Twitter, with greater transparency about US federal election campaign ads.
In May it was revealed Twitter is building a tool that allows users to send secret messages to one another.
The feature, called ‘Secret Conversation,’ was buried inside Twitter’s Android application package, which often contain code for tools that a company may be in the process of testing, according to TechCrunch .
The code was first spotted by Jane Manchun Wong, a computer science student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, who tweeted that it appeared Twitter may be working on ‘end-to-end encrypted secret direct messages’.
The company also launched a new behaviour monitoring system that relegates posts from abusive accounts.
In March Twitter confirmed it was introducing a new algorithmic news feature to timelines.
The feature is being curated by humans for now, but eventually it will be strictly algorithmic.
The curated timelines show up as a module on the top of users’ news feeds.
In February the company updated the app so it was easier to save tweets and read them later.
The social media giant launched a new bookmark feature for all users around the world.
To bookmark a tweet users can tap on the ‘Share’ icon and select ‘Add Tweet to Bookmarks.’
When they want to find it later, tap ‘Bookmarks’ from the profile icon menu.
Twitter also added a few new features to the share button, including the option to share a tweet via DM, email or text.