Great news for members of the Twitterati dropped this week as Twitter confirmed it is currently testing 280 character tweets, indicating that Twitter users will soon be able to write twice as long tweets.
Twitter’s 140 character tweet limit has been one of the platform’s most defining characteristics and undoubtedly helped to catapult the company to the position it is today.
Speaking about the decision to extend the character limit in a blog posted on Tuesday, Twitter Product Manager Aliza Rosen revealed that just 9 percent of all English language tweets posted today hit the 140 character limit, something which suggests that most users have to heavily edit their tweets in order to ensure they don’t go over the limit:
‘Sometimes, I have to remove a word that conveys an important meaning or emotion, or I don’t send my Tweet at all.’
Rosen also revealed that Twitter’s research into the matter has found that the 140 character limit is a source of frustration for people who tweet in English, and that more people tweet when they aren’t hampered by the character limit.
Twitter originally included the 140 character limit as this was the standard length of SMS messages when the company launched and tweets were sent via this format in the days before the mobile app.
However, the company has debated expanding the character limit for a number of years and feels confident that now is the time to introduce the new change.
Twitter intends to test the new 280 character limit with a small group of users before committing to a full launch, and will use the data and feedback it collects from the test to determine if this is the right decision for the platform and its users.
Ultimately, it’s about making Twitter simpler for everyone to use:
‘We’re hoping fewer Tweets run into the character limit, which should make it easier for everyone to Tweet.’