Twitter hosted its first developer conference called Chirp this week in San Francisco. The previously dubbed corporate toddler, Twitter represented itself at the conference as a polished, competitive industry leader.
Here are the highlights from the conference:
- Promoted Tweets
- The most important announcement at the convention from a marketers’ perspective was undoubtedly Twitter’s introduction of ‘promoted tweets.’ On their corporate blog, Biz Stone, founder of Twitter, describes promoted tweets, as “Tweets that businesses and organizations want to highlight to a wider group of users.” 
- Promoted tweets are being described as the Twitter product that could finally prove to be a profitable venture.
- For more on promoted tweets and the impact they could have on online marketing, check out Grace Kobayashi’s article  on The Search Agents’ blog.
- Twitter released previously undisclosed stats about their user base and traffic.
- 106 million registered users, who contribute 55 million posts a day
- 75% of traffic comes from outside Twitter
- Twitter’s site gets 180 million visits a month
- Twitter tried to ease developers’ anxieties about their role in the future of Twitter.
- Twitter attempted to put the app developers of over 100,000 applications at ease this week regarding their concerns over Twitter’s expansion plans. Up until this point in the history of Twitter, external developers have created the tools necessary to make Twitter a usable interface. From scheduling tweets, to posting photos or responding to customers, these applications have filled in the countless holes in Twitter’s otherwise rudimentary architecture.
- Over the past several weeks leading up to the conference, Twitter made it clear, through their acquisition of Atebits the maker of Tweetie,  that it intends to replace some of these external apps, either through purchase or by building their own.
- Twitter’s suggestion to worried developers is to create applications that help people better understand what Twitter is and how to navigate it.
- Focus on geo-location
- Twitter also introduced it new service called ‘points of interest,’ which will enable users to include their location within their tweets. This tool will dramatically improve Twitter’s search services, as users will now be able to search for tweets according to location.
- Twitter introduces ‘annotations’
- Twitter’s new annotations service shows which applicationwas used to write a post, as well as, where and when. This information will be embedded into the ‘metadata’ of the post.
Non-Twitter Related News of the Week
- Microsoft announced its plans to outsource its IT services to Infosys . The three-year agreement covers all of Microsoft’s’ internal IT services, as well as their help desk, infrastructure support from global centers and the management of Microsoft’s internal application, devices and database.
- Apple was forced to postpone their international sales of the iPad  by a month as a response to better than expected domestic sales.
- Google announced two new Twitter products in the works this week . The first, the Google Follow Finder, is designed to help users find people they could be interested in following. The second enables users to seach Twitter’s index, track topics over time, and ‘replay’ popular tweets.
- With all the hype around Apple’s latest product, the iPad, analysts on Wall Street are expecting  the sale of iPhone to improve in the coming year in response to the growing demand for smartphones.