Blaq was finally released this week for the BlackBerry Z10, and after just one day of playing with it, I’ve already decided that no other Twitter app, including the official one that is integrated into the almighty Hub, deserves a spot on my phone. I was asked to integrate my review of Blaq into a list of the best Twitter apps available for BlackBerry 10, but I simply could not come up with reasons as to why you would ever want to download any other app. Here are five reasons why Blaq will replace every Twitter app you’ve ever used.
Multiple Account Support
This is probably the biggest flaw missing from the official Twitter for BlackBerry (T4BB) app. Many people, myself included, run multiple accounts. I have my personal account and the account I use for BlackBerry mega fan purposes. Since I got my Z10 back at the launch event in January, I’ve been completely neglecting my personal account.
There are other apps out there that support multiple accounts, but none of them do it as fluidly and seamless as Blaq. The other two apps I’ve used are Tweetings and Neatly. The former is an Android port, while the latter is native built. My experiences with both have been nothing short of frustrating. Neatly constantly freezes and Tweetings is just bad all around. Normally I’m not one to bash an app straight up, but the lack of a good, dependable Twitter app has been an issue that has bugged my about BlackBerry 10 since launch. Plus I spent money on those two apps, and they don’t do what I need them to do.
Blaq is different. It makes tweeting from multiple accounts a breeze. This is coming from a guy who used two different apps on the 9900 because he hated swapping accounts. On Blaq, all you have to do to switch accounts is swipe down from the bottom, select accounts, then pick the account you want to use. Your timeline loads in a flash and you can Keep Moving without missing a beat. This brings me to my next point…
Real Time Updates
Blaq allows users to set an interval as to when you will get updates to your Twitter feed. It’s not exactly push notifications (which is good because that would do some serious damage to your battery life), but you can set updates from anywhere to every five minutes to an hour when you’re not actively looking at your timeline.
If you do happen to be scrolling through your timeline, the app will automatically update once you get close to the top. New tweets usually come in pretty seamlessly; I got some without realizing that I was already at the top of my timeline. If you reach the top and there are no new tweets, a simple scroll will pull your new tweets in after showing you the pictured screen.
Gorgeous Intuitive User Interface
I absolutely love the fluid and intuitive of BlackBerry 10 and how gorgeous it looks when swiping to and fro with all sorts of fancy gestures. It’s honestly my favorite aspect of the OS, and one of the main reasons why I’m not too fond of apps ported from Android apps. Blaq did a splendid job of building an app that caters to all the gestures and motions that can be used in BlackBerry 10. Swipe down from top of the screen to bring up settings and account options. Swipe down from the top of your feed to refresh your timeline. Swipe right to bring up the menu of which timeline you want to look at. Swipe right from a tweet in your timeline and choose if you want to favorite, retweet, or reply to that tweet. After having my Z10 for a couple months, these swipes and gestures are second nature to me.ADVERTISEMENT
Not only does Blaq integrate all of these to make for a simple experience, it also looks stunning. The app has a dark theme and easy to read font in five different sizes, as well as a menu that a pleasing color palette when choosing which timeline you want to view. At first the color coded options threw me off just a little bit; I would have preferred a theme of similar colors to give it a little bit more of a minimalist feel. However I learned that the timelines are that color for a reason. When one of those timelines has new tweets, a small circle of that color will appear at the top left of the screen. A simple swipe to the right and tap on that color brings up that timeline.
Is Blaq the perfect Twitter app for BlackBerry 10? No not just yet. For that to happen for me, I would need an joined timeline of all my accounts (like SocialScope for legacy devices) and Hub integration. Is Blaq the best Twitter app currently available for BlackBerry 10? Yes. Yes. A thousand times yes. Buy this app. Don’t bother with T4BB. I’m actually planning on deleting it, as soon as I hit publish on this article.
Blaq can be downloaded from BlackBerry World for $2.99, and believe me, it’s very much worth every penny.