updated 05:35 pm EDT, Tue August 9, 2011
Twitter direct image sharing now ready
Twitter on Tuesday quietly started giving some users, including ourselves, access to its promised direct image uploading. Those using the pure web app can now upload images when composing a new update or reply. The service uses Photobucket to host the images and will keep most readily accessible, although Twitter has warned that photos will eventually go away.
The upload process on the web is simple and just involves clicking a photo button followed by locating the image on the system. Although it appears as a thumbnail for the poster, end users will see a link. Web users or those whose apps support in-line photo viewing can see it without having to jump to a new page.
Mobile users don't yet have the direct upload option and are still relying on third-party services such as TwitPic or yFrog. Twitter hasn't said when it will update its own apps and make an API available for third-party apps to build it in themselves.
The release is an important step ahead of Apple's iOS 5, which integrates Twitter into the OS. Its camera and photo apps will allow direct posting and could need Twitter's self-hosted service to get the images online without using a third-party service or iCloud.