Twitter Working On 'Search Subscribe' Keyword Alert Feature

Twitter is preparing a feature that will allow users to receive notifications about new tweets that match a particular search term in a way that is similar to the way Google Alerts works. The goal is to help users find what they need.

The feature could also support new ad-targeting options.

Android developer Dylan Roussel shared his findings on Twitter. He writes that the latest version of Twitter Alpha includes the beginnings of a feature called “Search Subscribe,” which is not yet live in the app.

“Once subscribed,” he writes, “you'll receive push notifications for Tweets about your search query!”

Currently, users can get notifications or mute or block things by keyword, but cannot opt into specific tweets.

When performing a search in the Twitter app, users will see a bell icon next to the search bar, writes 9To5Google. When tapping it, the user will get a notice “you’re subscribed to receive push notifications for Tweets about,” along with the added keyword requested.  

Roussel could not recreate the notifications that Twitter’s Search Subscribe would create, citing that the feature is a work in progress.

Twitter's long-standing relationship with Google dates back to 2009, when the two companies originally made a deal to index all public tweets in the search engine through a special feed. At one point in 2016, Google was reported to have backed out of a deal to acquire the company.

It has been an on-off and on-again relationship. In 2015, Google and Twitter separately announced bringing tweets to Google Search on mobile devices. So, when searching on the Google app or any browser on a phone or a tablet, the user can find real-time content from Twitter in the search results.

Patrick Pichette, general partner of Inovia Capital, and former senior vice president and CFO of Google, now sits on the company’s board of directors, according to its website.

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