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Direct Messenger is an unofficial app for sliding into Twitter DMs

Direct Messenger is an unofficial app for sliding into Twitter DMs


But its functionality is curbed by Twitter API limitations

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Twitter has been making a lot of changes to Direct Messages lately, including removing the 140-character limit, and letting you chat with strangers, send URLs, and create groups. But the one thing that’s missing is a stand-alone direct messaging app. But just because Twitter isn’t working on it — at least not that we know of — doesn’t mean third-party developers aren’t giving it a shot. Direct Messenger is an unofficial Twitter app with a singular purpose — it lets you send and receive Direct Messages.

Once you link Direct Messenger to your Twitter account, the home screen shows you a list of your previously exchanged Direct Messages. Clicking the compose message button pulls up a list of your Twitter followers, and the app gives you a number of ways to communicate with them, including text, emoji, images, location, and even a dedicated button that brings up a cute animated heart and causes it to float around the screen.

Twitter doesn’t support these messaging formats

But don't expect the target of your DM to see what you see — Twitter itself doesn’t support these messaging formats. When you try to send an image via Direct Messenger, the app converts the image into a link, meaning that unless the person you're messaging also has the app installed, all they see is a link with a message that reads "Sent an image via Direct Messenger." Similarly, Direct Messenger's animated heart appears as a standard blue heart emoticon for Twitter users.

Despite these shortcomings — caused by Twitter's API limitations — Direct Messenger is a neat way to keep on top of a messaging format that's growing in functionality. With Facebook focusing so much attention on Facebook Messenger, and Twitter itself adding new features to its vanilla DMs, a stand-alone direct messaging app has been a long time coming. Although it might not be official, Direct Messenger does the job, and is available on the iTunes store for free.