If you’re noticing a new tab at the bottom of your Twitter app for iOS and Android, you’re not alone. The social network is experimenting with a "Featured News" tab that surfaces trending news items in its mobile apps to keep users engaged. The new tab sits right in the middle of the apps’ bottom row and when tapped, surfaces what’s currently happening in the world. Tapping on a news item not only opens up a screen with an image, block of text and link from the source, but a list of tweets from other publishers and Twitter users about the item. According to a Twitter spokesperson, "we’re experimenting with a news experience on iOS and Android as we continue to explore new ways to surface the best content to users."
This latest experiment is part of Twitter’s push to add more value for users, especially new ones. With its upcoming editorially curated Project Lightning feature surfacing the best tweets about daily events, the company is attempting to gather and keep new users that have found the timeline confusing. While the company has increased revenue, getting new people on the platform has slowed.
Unlike the editorially curated Project Lightning, the experimental Featured News tab is populated algorithmically. But like all Twitter experiments, how and what gets surfaced in the tab could change. In fact, the whole feature might go away. But regardless of how it works and if it sticks around, the company seems poised to try more experiments like this to make all those Tweets more palatable to a wider audience.
Tags: FeaturedNews, Twitter