On Wednesday, Twitter announced Flight, the company’s first mobile developer conference. The event is scheduled on Oct. 22 in San Francisco. The company has not set an agenda but will start with a keynote from the company’s CEO, Dick Costolo. Technical sessions aiming to help developers to build on the social network’s platform will follow.
Flight is not the very first developer conference the company has set. Twitter held Chirp back in 2010, which is its first developer conference. However, that event did not take off and it was not followed up.
Twitter will not just allow the developers to build apps. Over the years, Twitter has built a complicated relationship with its developers as the company’s business strategy has changed, allowing the company to invade the territory developers were initially supported to build upon.
Twitter is known to acquire third party apps and clients like Tweetie and Tweetdeck, bringing third party services within its reach where the company can control them to mesh with its business structure that’s ad-driven.
Some developers such as Tweetro and Tapbots have fought with Twitter for creating their own clients while inventions from other developers were stolen outright by Twitter. The latest developer to throw a white flag is Twitpic after it was threatened by the company over a trademark dispute. You can pass all the drama as a late admission by the company that you can build things using its data but not an entire client or service that will compete with its functionality.
During Flight, the company will be showing off the developer tools that it has accumulated for the past year and a half.
The microblogging site has acquired companies engaged in mobile development for the past couple of years, including Crashlytics, a tool meant to report bugs and app crashes, and MoPub, which is a mobile ad exchange.
Twitter has also announced that it has revamped its developer site. It may be the company’s way of showing that it has not shut its door to developers, although recent events have led users and developers to believe otherwise.
Twitter has set up a website for the conference but it is not offering details. However, it can be expected that the two tools will be included in the program. What should not be expected in the event is the announcement of any product news for the users. Developer conferences like Flight tent to focus on technologies and engineering.
Flight is open to developers for a fee of $140 and more than 1,000 people are expected to turn up at the event.
Twitter is hoping to encourage a different kind of developer in the event – developers who would want to use the company’s streaming API to update decisions during live events, or build a better design for its website or Twitter cards with the company’s Buy button service.
While earliest developers may not be able to bring back their trust to the company, Flight will prove to be a great platform for Twitter and present and future developers to communicate with each other.