MetroTwit sails off into the sunset as ‘token limits’ take another victim

Twitter apps are pretty invaluable. They’re also highly personal. What’s super important to you may be trivial to me. That’s why it’s important to find the app that fits your needs. That’s also why it sucks when that app gets killed off. Today, that app is MetroTwit for Windows 8 and desktop.

The culprit? Once again it’s the access token limit imposed by Twitter on third party developers. We’ve seen this system kill off apps before, recently Rowi on Windows Phone.

MetroTwit for Windows 8 launched in March 2012 – almost on the two year mark. That was after leaving the desktop version that came out in 2010, which was a version still being developed (indeed, the ‘Loop’ beta version was just updated today). However, all development will cease immediately. If you own the app, it should continue working on for the foreseeable future, but pretty soon you won’t be even to be able to re-download it.

From the official site of MetroTwit:

“We are saddened to announce the end-of-life of the MetroTwit for Desktop and MetroTwit for Windows 8 apps effective immediately.Due to the “access token limit” imposed by Twitter since August 2012, we are preemptively sunsetting MetroTwit due to technical limitations of Twitter’s API which may prevent existing users from accessing the app after the limit has been crossed.Effective immediately, we will be removing the MetroTwit for Desktop installer and MetroTwit for Windows 8 Store listing to ensure the app remains usable by all current users.”

There’s not much else to say. I personally was a big fan of MetroTwit, especially for desktop where I often have to “live” while doing real work. It’s a sad state to see developers lose their apps to something so arbitrary, but we imagine this is not the end.

Luckily, Tweetium for Windows 8 seems to be filling the gap nicely. Though it has no desktop counterpart, the Modern UI app has quickly become one of our favorites for our Surface 2. Tweetro+ and glƏƏk! Are also popular alternatives.

To the developers behind MetroTwit, namely David Golden, Winston Pang, Long Zheng, thanks for your work.

Source: MetroTwit

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • Would they be able to change the name and release a "new" app?
  • Its less to do with the app and more to do with the developer API account, and making a new one of those will only create more problems.
  • "access token limit"... Please explain ➡DANIEL⬅.❔❔
  • Follow the links I give.
  • Oh!.. Sorry.
  • Can they just create twitter 1 twitter 2 and twitter 3 ..
  • As a 3rd party developer, you have a limit of requests you can make to twitter. You need this requests to post tweets, get all tweets, and everything that comes from and goes to twitter. These requests are limited to users per application, and MetroTwit is about to hit that.
  • In other words, they are only allowed to have so many people use the app at once... I guess Twitter doesn't want to be out trafficked by third party apps... Makes sense.. Can't hate on Twitter for that..
  • But you can hate them for providing crappy 1st party apps. Twitter apps for WP and Windows 8 are horrible.
  • Root cause... Look at the root cause....
  • As part of the Twitter API agreement, developers are allowed only so many users.
  • When the number of unique users exceeds the "token limit" Twitter pulls it... I cannot remember the limit. 100k?
  • Yeah, 100k, unless you were already at 100k users when the limits were agreed, in which case it's 200k.
  • Funny, I was thinking 100k..
  • So sad ...
  • If WP8.1 doesn't support USB OTG then that will be sad...
  • That's unfortunate. Certainly wont be the last casualty. Will Twitter relax these conditions in the future, or are they pretty dedicated to quashing indie clients?
  • They're dedicated unfortunately.
  • Why is the limit even imposed? Genuine question I don't understand the point. Is it just so most people stick to the official apps?
  • Yes.
  • Twitter does not like these 3rd party applications, therefore they introduced the limits. They suck.
  • I don't think its the applications that they dont like. It's that they aren't making money off them. They can't really shut off all third party access, as there are far too many grey areas where the API is being used for purposes other than like for like clients (and its only like for like clients that are limited in tokens).
  • How does twitter make money? I never see ads on my twitter online or app.
  • Promoted tweets on the website, and in the official iOS / Android apps.
  • Its sad but everytime one of these articles pops up I never even have heard of some of these apps for twitter. This sucks for those who were using it.
  • Aw. MetroTwit is the best looking Twitter app :'(  This is kinda lame: you make your app, gain some users, gain some more, and when you hit the limit, you're dead. IT'S A BIG WHAT.   If only the Twitter app for W8 is as good as this.. and maybe the *ehem* Twitter for WP *ehem*
  • Very sad. I still use Rowi. Rather pointless to find the next best one. Practically guaranteed to all max out on their users and quit.
  • Thanks a lot... OBAMA!
  • Lol!!!!!❕❕❕❕❕..... What❔❔
  • The windows rt version was a big ol steaming pile of shit anyways. The original windows desktop version was king
  • I hate this Twitter's policy. I like many 3rd party app, because official app is suck.
  • Developers should find a way not to reach the token limit stupid thing so existing users dont get affected while new... well, new ones cant do anything.
    this is sad news since I liked metrotwit when I had twitter... at least now Daniel Rubino is happy Tweetium will get more attention and users since he likes it alot... it's like it was his plan, first promote Tweetium and then Metrotwit disappears ;) good plan Daniel... good plan! *claps* ;P
  • Twitter doesn't give devs any way to see how many tokens has been given out per app.
  • Yah :( You have to email them, but they do respond, usually within about 48hrs, and let you know how many you've used.
  • Token limit.. Suck.. It's likely we spent our money for nothing. Is there any solution for dev to solve this problem? I think twitter doesnt want every good 3rd party to have alive.
  • It's funny, ever since I got my 625 and the Twitter app, I don't use MetroTwit anymore. I feel sad about this, the desktop version is amazing, absolutely the best Twitter client for my money.
  • Thanks a lot Dev team foelr your efforts.
  • Are there any decent win 7 desktop clients?
  • Twitter is a disgrace and effectively holding a gun to the developers heads.  If we all did timeline refreshes on the Twitter app there would be the same bandwidth used as if we had been using a 3rd party app so whats the big deal Twitter? Innovation stifled thanks to the tight monopolised company that is Twitter.
  • No use in making other apps for twitter with these limitations. Your favorite app will eventually die off as it won't get any more updates and won't be available for download anymore. 
  • Twitter is becoming useless, will soon die and be replaced by better services. This stupid limit will accelerate this.
  • I think you may be mixing Twitter with Facebook...
  • I don't think so.
  • He is right. I read an article about these services and by the looks of it Twitter will fade off in a few years as FB makes noticeable expansion. USA mainly use twitter while the rest of the world heavily relies on fb for social sharing.
  • yeah, for sure *cough*
  • Best twitter app for WP is Tweet it!  Beautiful design, fast and smooth
  • I'm actually surprised that it took MetroTwit so long to hit its token limit.
  • Windows 8.1 is in dire need of a good twitter app. Or maybe I just can't find a fitting one.
  • Daniel, how does People Hub get around that - or even something like FlipBoard?? btw, when is FlipBoard coming to WP?
  • That is a fair question, curious about the answer too
  • They have a exception given by Twitter to make any amount of calls they want.
  • Somebody said above that only like for like twitter accounts have to worry about tokens. Since that's not what the integration does they may not have to worry about it. It might also be covered by the search deal for Bing to index tweets. I'm not sure that the built-in access uses normal API calls like the apps do. It seems to run through Microsoft's backend servers. That's why it ties to your MSID.
  • Goodbye MetroTwit. #Straya
  • Of course. My favorite twitter app...again. :( It's very frustrating how they keep chopping all the good apps off at the knees.
  • F twitter. And no lube.
  • Very sad indeed... there goes my favorite Twitter client (for desktop at least) And it's especially hard to swallow because Twitters official offerings are dreadfull to say the least. The WP app is usable and quite OK but all the rest is horrific, even the browser version is terrible! I could understand the move if these apps were harming Twitters business model, but do they even have a businessmodel????
  • Big time bummer. I was an avid user of the AIR-based Tweetdeck app...the native version for Windows just wasn't the same. I thought I got lucky some while back finding MetroTwit, and now this. I use Windows 8, but spend most of my time in the desktop mode. Time to look for a suitable replacement app...
  • That just sucks and the official apps are not all that. I don't see this silly token limit pushing people (users) off twitter though. Developers, maybe..
  • The official Twitter app is perfectly fine.
  • Sad :(
  • This would explain why Hidden Pineapple has so many different apps for twitter that have slight variations.
  • I've never understood the token limit Twitter uses. I mean, they don't lift a finger to make quality or interesting apps, but they seem hell bent to not let anybody else come up with an interesting solution that furthers their brand.
  • Twitter is being too boorish
  • I have seen so many great Twitter apps essentially killed due to these token limits. Tweetdeck works really well, but it is just so plain in appearance compared to apps like MetroTwit and the recent Tweetium. Another thing that hurts situations like these is when people stop using a client and fails to release their tokens.  Head over to twitter dot com/settings/applications and browse through your list of apps you have a token for and revoke access to those services you do not use any longer. It can help extend access to other users. Also keep in mind that users with multiple twitter accounts uses a token for each account.