You may be sick of hearing everyone talk about Twitter since it seems to have really caught fire recently with Scoble and other high profile personalities starting to kick up their usage, but I had to chime in with a few thoughts of my own on the subject. As I previously posted back in December I have been a Twitter user since last summer and for most of the last 9 months I have used it to try to actually meet up with friends face-to-face. In the last month or so it has turned into a frenzy of mini blog posts with no real practical usage for meeting up with folks, which I thought was the original intent. As I look at the GeoTwitter mashup and think more about my own situation, I wonder if Twitter is used primarily by people in the United States who have finally found some reason to use text messaging.
I linked to a M:Metrics worldwide study last summer when I wrote about the types of data smartphone users were consuming. As you can see in the study, countries in Europe were using 70 to 85% of their data consumption to send text messages while here in the U.S. people were only using 36% of their data consumption to do so. I know I personally only have a couple family members and friends that even have text messaging on their phones and rarely ever send direct text messages. 99% of my person-to-person text messages are to and from my daughters. I think Twitter now gives people a simple way to send text messages and reach all sorts of new "friends". Is Twitter popular because people finally have a reason to send text messages?
Credit: Creating Passionate Users blog
I admit that I have been hooked on Twitter the last month of so and am
spending wasting way too much time checking my mobile device every time a message hits it. My battery life and productivity have been seriously suffering and I just went through my Twitter account and turned off phone notifications for most all of my "friends". I am finding it better to just dedicate 10 minutes or so to check Twitter updates on a computer rather than staring at my mobile device display checking updates.
I enjoyed reading this Creating Passionate Users blog post that helped snap me out of my Twitter fog and refocus me on priorities in life and following Twitter updates continuously on my phone is not one of them anymore.