Tired of using the official social media applications with limited customisations and annoying promotions pop up all over. Then third-party software must be a great alternate option for your worries. But hold on, there are a lot out there most of them being paid apps. The reason for the applications being paid is the continuous development and update it keeps on cycling through to keep it feature rich. However, we have managed to find one application for Facebook and Twitter each that are available in the Google Play store and Apple store for free as of now.
Owly for Twitter
I am pretty sure most of us might have not heard of this before. It is an extremely customisable and feature-rich third-party client application to use the social media Twitter. Like numerous other third-party apps named after some bird, this too is derived from the night liver, Owl. The icon is a symbol of an owl’s face in gold embodied in black which looks nice. Owly is developed and hosted by Arthur Ivanets from Ukraine who sure is not a known developer but has done an impressive work in the design and features of the application.
How does Owly differ from the native Twitter app?
Traditional Twitter app sure looks good and works well but has some practical downsides and a lot of limitations to customise the feed to your liking. On top of all, the promoted content that plagues your timeline with random tweets you never want to see. Owly solves both of these for you.
Owly gives access to the tweets in your timeline in a chronological order, unlike the annoying algorithm that Twitter uses to rearrange tweets in its own application. And another extremely good news, no need to stop reading mid-way and check why something irrelevant to you has ended up in your feed. Thanks to the developer of Owly, goodbye twitter ads.
What additional features does Owly for Twitter have?
You can see five tabs and a header by default in an Owly app. The first tab is your tweet feeds which also can be customised to a great extent. The second is the likes tab that shows the tweets you ended up liking also in chronological order of tweeting or retweeting. The third tab is your self-feed, that is the feed of your tweets and re-tweets that people see when they visit your profile. And the fourth one is new of some sorts, a news feed that gathers tweets based on the topics you choose. You get the tweets from registered accounts related to topics you have chosen. The last tab is the settings menu where a heap of customisability lies.
Themes are the one twitter totally lacks at. Of course, there is day or night mode but is that all. You have an array of themes based on white and few dark colours with popping accent colours to keep the Twitter feed beautiful. You also get to play around with the design layout of the app with limited pre-sets. The header that consists of your DP, name and other stats has also few options to choose to match your taste.
How deep can you customise your feeds in Owly?
With Owly for Twitter, you can get anyone’s tweet in your feed without even following them. There is a feature called “reading” which is similar to “following” except that it doesn’t add yourself in the follower’s list that is available publicly. It stays in a list called “reading” which is accessible within the Owly only. It simply shields your interests from the public view. “Reading” and “following” are two different things and you can do one of the following or even do both and your feeds will work glitch free. Tweet digest is another useful feature based on “reading”. The Twitter handles you have chosen to read will accumulate into tweet digest and prompt notification to read if some high activity is detected with those accounts.
In the regular feed, you get to choose what type of tweets can appear. There are various toggles to choose like readings only, include replies, include retweets, video autopay and many other. Not that you can customize on what to show, you can filter out what you don’t wish to see. Filtering can be done with hashtags so that when a person you follow tweets about something you don’t like, that will never enter your feed.
How to setup Owly for Twitter
Download Owly from the respective App store and log in using your twitter account and grant permission to access your profile. You will have to run through the initial set up process before accessing your feed. Choose a theme, header, transition animations, font style and colour as per your choice and save the settings to see the fresh new Owly app.
No application comes without downsides. The app prompts the user to buy the premium version of the same for a onetime payment to access some of the themes and customisations which is not that annoying as of now. But the features once free now ask premium subscription to use which might lead to Owly becoming a paid app at one point of time. Another small downside is the live “like” count tracking present on Twitter and has not made its way to Owly yet.
Friendly for Facebook
Friendly is a minimalistic Facebook application for passive users opting to have a hassle-free social media experience. It is a glorified browser nonetheless that has some noteworthy optimisation to run the Facebook web app inside of the application.
With Friendly for Facebook, you need not go through the hassle of switching applications back and forth to browse your feed and use Facebook Messenger. You get to access all in one platform. As every other third-party Facebook app, you get to change colour scheme of the interface. You also get to save the videos and access them even from the other apps.
Friendly also offers premium features in its app that can be availed by subscription. Facebook Adblocker and feed customisation are some of the notable premium features in the app. Though there is room for a lot of improvements Friendly is bug-free and gets the task done.