Twitter Upgrades ‘Retweet’ Function

Apps and Software

Microblogging site Twitter upgraded the "retweet" feature to include pictures, GIFs, and even videos / Photo by: Kevin Krejci via Flickr


Microblogging site Twitter rolled out its new update focused on the "Retweet" function, allowing users to add a photo, video, or GIF to a retweet instead of just text.

While the upgrade seems like a minor enhancement, the new feature is deemed notable for its potential to make a great impact on the amount of media shared on Twitter, TechCrunch reports.

It adds that allowing the support of media for Retweets will possibly lead to a significant increase in non-text content users will see on their Twitter timeline as they scroll through, since retweeting with a comment is deemed as a common behavior among users today.

"The most exciting part of this project was that we were working on a feature that many people asked for," a Twitter Engineering account said in an update. "We’re very excited to launch this feature across Twitter, and we can’t wait to see it being used by all of you."

Moreover, TechCrunch also says the update demonstrates another step away from the social networking site's initial goal of being a kind of public SMS-type platform along with the restrictions of such a format.

Twitter has seen significant changes on its platform through the years; from supporting media, live video streaming, audio broadcasting up to doubling the character limit to 280 (from the initial 140) in 2017. As the company continues to innovate its app's features, it is also working on making conversations with a test app called twttr—a prototype with a new user interface for threaded replies.

The combination of these changes shows that Twitter is slowly leaving its reputation for "text status updates," to become a platform that's more media-rich and engaging. Such an innovation could boost the time users spent on the app, the tech news sites says, and in turn, will increase ad revenues.

The update is now available on iOS, Android, and Twitter's mobile website. Twitter said the enhancement to the Retweet feature was the product of teamwork and collaboration across multiple teams, considering that the changes affected many elements of the platform such as the tweet detail page, timelines, accessibility features, and parity across users.