Twitter finally lets its users upload photos

Aug 10, 2011
Eliot Sefton

After five years of having to post links to other sites, users can post photos onto the site

In a move that is likely to be met with a collective sigh of 'about time too', Twitter has today launched a photo service that allows its users to directly upload snaps onto their accounts.

Until now, tweeters have had to be content with using third party photo hosting services such as TwitPic and yFrog to share images with their followers. But, as of today, all users can click on a small camera icon in the bottom left of the Tweet box and upload snaps directly to their account. The images will be hosted by an outside organisation, Photobucket, but is a 'native' Twitter service.

In a social media age where speed and convenience are key variables, Twitter's latest innovation is likely to be seen as an improvement, albeit one long overdue – the micro-blogging service has been running for over five years. Yet there are concerns from some users about potential privacy issues the new service poses.

Twitter plans to group all shots uploaded into online media galleries which will, according to the company, "let you see the images a user has shared on Twitter". In what some will read as a warning, the company posted this piece of advice on its image uploading support page: "If you don't want anyone to see your images on Twitter, you should delete the Tweets containing these images."

The innovation could also spell trouble for the network of third-party developers that has grown up around Twitter since its inception. While the company announced that users' galleries will include images uploaded through other organisations, there is little doubt that this is a move designed by Twitter to muscle in on the growing popularity for sharing photos. Whether its rivals will be seriously affected by the new competition remains to be seen.

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