Twitter bids for TweetDeck as UberMedia plans Twitter rival

by Morgan Phelps

Twitter has its sights set on UK-based TweetDeck, looking to acquire the third-party add-on app for the low, low price of $50 million, according to a report published in The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday. The rumors are swirling in the wake of sources claiming last week that UberMedia was also planning to purchase to TweetDeck.

Twitter, which has recently announced plans to refocus on product development by third-party developers, is likely seeking to counteract plans by UberMedia to launch a rival site to compete with the microblogging powerhouse. Sources have said that UberMedia is plotting a competing platform that would address common complaints about Twitter, including the limited length of messages.

Since UberMedia already has the apps UberSocial, Echofon and Twidroyd (Android) under its direction, it does not seem out of the realm of possibility to acquire TweetDeck or even launch its own Twitter-like service. Sources cited by CNN said UberMedia has started developing apps and online services utilizing Twitter and other social media sites. Plus, the company already has a strained history with Twitter, as Twitter temporarily shut out three of the company’s apps in February and forced UberMedia to change the name of UberTwitter to UberSocial.

However, the reports of UberMedia’s competing endeavor could be nothing but smoke, as UberMedia marketing head Steve Chadima has previously claimed the company’s “foremost desire is to continue to innovate on the Twitter platform and bring more users and usage to Twitter.” This would be great news for Twitter as it reaches out to developers and simultaneously seeks to bring more new users into the fold.

Conversely to its relationship with UberMedia, Twitter has had a friendly connection with TweetDeck, with the two sharing revenue generated from “promoted tweets.” But whether Twitter or a competitor such as UberMedia acquires TweetDeck, Twitter will be forced to move forward with its previously announced plans to work with third-party developers and expand its mobile app presence.