No need to daydream or run a leaked early build any longer, because the official TweetDeck for Android beta has been made available. And as the TD team says in the title of their announcement post, they want you to “come and get it!”
I don’t see any major changes since yesterday’s leak in the way of column overviews or the other Desktop/iPhone features people have been asking about, but it’s running very smoothly for me, and… it’s TweetDeck!
So hit up the link, log in with your TweetDeck account (set one up if necessary), and you’ll get an email (pasted below) instructing you on installation. Don’t forget to thank the TweetDeck team for their hard work by giving them beta feedback! After all, that’s why we have the app and it will ensure a fun and functional high quality product for all. (cont.)
Thank you for your interest in Android TweetDeck. We’ve been hard at work developing the next generation Deck experience and we’re excited to give you a sneak peak.
Please use the TweetDeck account you signed up for the beta test with inside the Android application.
Now, on with the show!
How to Install Android TweetDeck
Go into Settings, select Applications and enable “Unknown sources”.
Download tAttachApkInstaller from the Android Market
Download Android Tweetdeck from: (link)
When asked, open the file with tAttachApkInstaller
Once you’re up and running with Android TweetDeck, you’ll be prompted to enter your service accounts. The quickest (and best) way to get started is to log in with an existing TweetDeck account.
If you’ve previously setup this account in TweetDeck Desktop, any associated Twitter, Facebook, Buzz and Foursquare accounts will automatically be imported. If you would like to add an additional account you can enter the credentials under the appropriate service in the Android app.
Once you’ve added your accounts, click done to continue.
After adding your accounts you’ll be presented with the “Home” timeline. New to Android TweetDeck is the concept of the blended column. Your “Home” column will contain updates from Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and Buzz. The updates from different services are indicated by the following colors:
Black – Twitter
Dark Blue – Facebook
Light Blue – Foursquare
Dark Red – Buzz
In addition to the blended home column, we’ve created a new “Me” column and included Twitter direct messages as a default column type.
“Me,” like “Home,” is a multi-service blended column but unlike “Home” it only includes updates that pertain directly to you. These updates include:
Twitter @ mentions
Buzz updates on your content
We’ve tried to keep your columns clean and optimize the UI for mobile display. You’ll notice that updates in the timeline don’t have individual timestamps. Instead, we’ve created what we call the update clock and placed it at the top of each column. As you scroll through your timeline, the update clock will show the time of the top entry. Zooming back through your updates feels a bit like traveling back in time – give it a try ;)
We wanted to indicate what updates you’ve read and not read in a clean and simple manner. Columns that have unread content will glow yellow in their header or dot column indicator if they’re off the screen. If you look at the column scroll bar, you’ll see that the unread section is indicated by yellow while read is light grey. We also remember your position in the timeline so when you come back to the app you don’t have to scroll down to where you left off. If you want to jump straight to the top, just click the column header.
Update Detail Views
Clicking on an update will take you to a detail view custom tuned to highlight the unique functionality of each service. We’ve spent a lot of time making sure the best features from each service are presented in the best possible way.
In general, the detail view will decode images, conversation, comments, attachments and geotags and display them below Twitter, Facebook and Buzz updates. We’ve done this to provide a quick way to view all the cool content people are posting without having to dig deep with multiple clicks.
For Facebook and Buzz updates, you can view and post comments directly within the app.
Foursquare Detail View
We’ve treated Foursquare a bit differently as it’s so location-centric. When you click on a Foursquare update, we’ll take you to a detail view for the venue your friend has checked into. This view will give you an overview of who else has checked into this location, how long they’ve been there and any tips this venue may have. You can check in (first button in the toolbar), shout or leave your own tip. You can also jump straight into the new map view.
You can get to the map view from the main toolbar in column view or directly from a geotagged Tweet or Foursquare venue. The map view gives an overview of any geotagged tweets and Foursquare venues nearby. We pick the 20 most popular Foursquare locations for any given map screen.
If you have friends checked-in nearby they’ll be placed at the edge of the map; if you click on them the map will pan and center on their location.
To go along with the blended multi-service columns, we’ve created a new multi-service compose screen that will display all of your accounts at once. By default, your main Twitter account is switched on when composing a message but you can broadcast to as many services as you want, including Facebook, Buzz, Foursquare or other Twitter accounts, by simply toggling on the appropriate image.
You can attach images, contacts and locations to your updates by clicking the disclosure triangle; when updating these options will be neatly tucked away under the keyboard.
Once you click “send” your updates will be automatically placed in your timeline and you’ll see their send status via Android notifications.
The contacts screen can be accessed by clicking the grid on the main toolbar in column view or when you attach a contact in compose view. You have twelve quick slots for the friends you talk to the most. We pre-load the first four slots with your own accounts for easy access to your account overviews. To add a new contact, just click on an empty slot and select a friend. To clear a contact, press and hold on a filled slot.
If you want to get to the profile page of one of your contacts that you haven’t added to the quick slots just click on “All Contacts” and you’ll see all friends from every service you’ve added.
If you want to jump directly to a specific Twitter account, just type the username in the bottom box and hit return on the keyboard.
Adding More Columns
In addition to the three native columns, you can add additional columns by browsing user profiles and clicking through the various column types. You can also add search columns directly from the search button in the main toolbar.
For example: You can add your favorite tweets as a column by clicking on contacts, your twitter profile, favorites then add column.
We use the native Android notification system for alerting you of unread updates for each column. To change which columns get updates, use the hard Android context menu button and select Notifications.
Since this is a beta application we would definitely appreciate your help making it better. Please use the special Android Beta feedback forum and let us know what you like or don’t like about the app. We’d also love to hear about crashes and other weirdness so don’t hold back :)
We would like to get version 1.0 in the Android Market as soon as possible and really appreciate your help making it the best app it can be.
The TweetDeck Team