A screenshot from the unpublished Flamingo client.
Twitter has been in the news several times over the token system it uses to control the number of users any third party client can have. The popular Android client Flamingo, has now been removed from the Google Play Store due to reaching said limit. The app became one of the more popular clients used by those who do not enjoy using Twitter's own app
. The app includes multiple themes, a pop up preview mode and other features that are not included in the official Twitter app. Unfortunately, this week their success caused them to reach the limit and the app was unpublished. The app developer, Sam Ruston did note that those who have previously bought the app can still download it from their My Apps section of the Play store.
There have been numerous other cases of these third party apps dying off due to the token limit reaching back to 2013
. There are a few who made it back, such as Fenix in 2016. Twitter basically allows only so many "tokens" for each developer, which caps the amount of users each app can have. These tokens also account for anyone working on the development of the third party app as well. Developers are able to recover tokens from accounts that are no longer using the app, but the number of tokens stays the same. Many who are in favor of using third party clients claim this practice is unfair, since it limits the success of developers and allows Twitter to keep the majority of users. So unfortunately, the better the app and the more success a developer has, the faster the app is killed.