Twitterrific for iPad Gets a Big Update, Doesn’t Fix Connection Errors

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Twitterrific for iPad update

Twitterrific for iPad had a big update released last night, to Version 1.1.  The update adds support for picture and video uploading and custom image upload services. There is a long list of additions, improvements and bug fixes contained in this update – but it’s interesting to note that the app’s odd rogue connection errors are still around.

On my first launch of the app after updating it, here’s the familiar error that I saw:

Twitterrific connection error

It says Twitter servers are currently unavailable.  The Twitterrific folks responded in my earlier post on this issue and claimed it was a general iPad WiFi issue – a problem with the iPad re-establishing its WiFi connection after coming out of sleep mode.  I disagree, as nearly every time I’ve seen it I have already been in an active iPad session for quite a while and every other app that requires a WiFi connection is working just fine when this error gets thrown up in Twitterrific.  The same applies when seeing the error last night.  I had just checked email quite happily – and used the App Store to download and install the app’s own update.  Both of those require WiFi and both worked fine – yet Twitterrific still generates this error.

Here’s the full list of changes in Twitterrific 1.1:

NEW FEATURES:

• Support for picture & video uploading
• Support for custom image upload services
• Image URLs from Img.ly & Tweetphoto now appear in popovers
• Twitterrific now uses OAuth
• Reply all (by default)

IMPROVEMENTS:

• Number of API calls per hour increased due to OAuth switch
• Supports internationalized domain names in URLs
• Improved parsing of Twitter status URLs
• Better handling of links containing special characters
• Compose view is now better able to handle undo
• Improved handling of your own tweets & replies

BUG FIXES:

• Used full screen mode to avoid video playing behind mini-browser
• Saving images to the photo album now works correctly
• Registered users are no longer reminded to register again
• Users can no longer use email addresses to log in
• The number of new tweets is reported correctly
• Multiple popovers are handled correctly

You can find this latest version of Twitterrific for iPad in the App Store now.  It is a free app.


Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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15 thoughts on “Twitterrific for iPad Gets a Big Update, Doesn’t Fix Connection Errors”

  1. it is certainly not an iPad wifi issue … because the same thing happens in the iPhone app. A design bug on their end, which apparently they're either a) ignoring or b) working to fix without publicly acknowledging (a la Apple). I use the free version, so I can't complain too much, and I'm used to the interface, but as soon as I get around to taking the time I'll probably move to a more stable app.

  2. Pogo,

    We've never had reports of this API error on wake with the iPhone version like that on iPad. If you are seeing something like this, then I suspect it's due to normal network connectivity issues you have when you're out and about with iPhone. These errors manifested themselves when the iPad was introduced so we can say with assuredness that it's not something that's been in Twitterrific all along.

    As I mentioned in your earlier post, we've been working with the folks at Apple to reproduce the network/wifi bug and have had limited success. It's a vexing problem which is probably why Apple hasn't issued a fix for it even now, over a month since initial launch.

    Also, no one on these forums ever answered my question about what happens if you wake your ipad from sleep and instead of immediately refreshing your Twitterrific timeline, you surf or check your email first. In those cases, network connections are established and we think you won't see the same errors when refreshing in Twitterrific.

    No matter what, it's a tough problem to solve because reproducing it each and every time is next to impossible. If you or any of your readers can pinpoint the exact steps to make this error occur every time, please contact us at [email protected]. It would go a long way towards helping to fix the bug. Thanks!

    1. "Also, no one on these forums ever answered my question about what happens if you wake your ipad from sleep and instead of immediately refreshing your Twitterrific timeline, you surf or check your email first. In those cases, network connections are established and we think you won't see the same errors when refreshing in Twitterrific."

      I have answered this before – and have even stated this above in the post:

      "The same applies when seeing the error last night. I had just checked email quite happily – and used the App Store to download and install the app’s own update. Both of those require WiFi and both worked fine – yet Twitterrific still generates this error."

      Just to be crystal clear here, I have had numerous occasions where the iPad is wide awake, where I have used email, Safari, the App Store, RSS apps, games that require WiFi connections to their servers and so on, before launching Twitterrific – and within the same session I have launched Twitterrific and seen that error. It is NOT just occurring when the iPad comes straight out of sleep mode. In fact, no offense to Twitterrific, but it is *never* the first connected app I launch after waking the iPad.

      1. Thanks for the info then. Hopefully it will help, although it's almost impossible to tell if these errors are being returned by Twitter or by some internal problem. Twitter's error codes are very, very vague. We'll keep at it!

  3. Add to the mix, some people tweeted to me 2 weeks ago, saying by resetting their WiFi setting on the iPad, it got rid of the API errors in Twitterrific 1.01 for iPad. I tired that myself, and it only work for a day for me.

  4. I'm liking the new update to Tweetdeck. It's now my default Twitter application for my iPad.

  5. FYI, the error shown in the screen shot on this blog, with the wording, “The Twitter servers are currently unavailable. Please try again later.” Can seemingly only appear in two cases: If Twitter returns status code 502 or status code 503 (both of which are server-side HTTP errors).

    The only way to get that particular error is if Twitter reports that error to us (which means a connection almost had to have been successfully created). This is not related to the WiFi bug identified by us.

    If this doesn’t happen for other twitter clients on the same network, then I’m not sure, but maybe other clients are ignoring the 502/503 errors and simply never alerting the user of their existence. (Maybe they fail silently. Maybe we should too? There’s nothing the user can do about a Twitter-side error.)

    Technically a 502 error could happen if the user is on a network that has some kind of proxy between them and the internet and the proxy failed for some unknown reason. Apparently twitter can return that code directly, too, sometimes (since they may be using proxies of their own).

    ——-
    On a separate issue, during a normal network connection and it fails immediately in a “no net” sort of way. The OS is telling us there’s no way to make the connection, so we present an error since we can’t very well second-guess the OS (which provides the framework for letting us connect in the first place).

    1. Sorry, but I'm not buying that the issue is at the Twitter end either. Just did a very quick test, with the following steps and results:
      — At 5:44 PM I woke my iPad up. Launched email first, checked the Inbox was refreshed properly.
      — At 5:45 PM I launched Twitterrific. It showed me the same Twitter API error as shown in my screencap above in the main post
      — I immediately opened the TweetFlow app on the iPad. No Twitter API errors, it refreshed its timeline just fine. So did Tweetie on the iPhone and the desktop. All this while the clock was still at 5:45.
      I think the error message is bogus, and the issue, as I have thought all along, is with Twitterrific.

  6. @patrickj Hi, I'm on of the developers of Twitterrific.

    First off, we're not trying to pass the blame off to Apple (with the Wi-Fi bug), it's just the only thing we've been able to reproduce in our own testing. If there's a bug in our software, we want to fix it. But before we can do that, we need to reproduce it.

    To that end, I'd like to get a screenshot of your network settings screen: the one with the DHCP/BootP/Static selector at the top of the page. I'd also like to know what make and model of Wi-Fi router you use and how it's connected to the network (cable or DSL, service provider name, etc.) I'd also like to see a screenshot of your Safari settings (Twitterrific shares some cache and cookie settings with Safari.)

    I'd also like to know what the exact wording of the error message at startup and if it's always the same. In the screenshot above, the "servers not available" indicates that a connection to Twitter was established, but they declined to fulfill our request. Why this happens at startup is anyone's guess: I would not rule out it being a problem on Twitter's end, but won't blame them until we can reproduce the problem.

    As you probably don't want to post this (semi-private) info to this forum, please mail it to support at iconfactory dot com. Thanks!

    -ch

    1. Have emailed all of that info as requested. While doing that, I also tested again with thee Twitter apps on the iPad – launching them all within seconds of each other, Twittelator shows no errors and refreshes its timelines, TweetFlow does the same, Twitterrific gets the same error as shown above. I just don't see how this points to an issue at the Twitter end.

        1. Maybe so – but those apps are also choosing to refresh timelines successfully while Twitterrific chooses not to?

          Sent from my Magical, Revolutionary iPad Thingie

  7. I get the same error. Connected via 3G, no wifi, plenty of solid connectivity across other apps, mail checking fine, etc. It's almost perfect guys. Almost.

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