Twitter’s New Direction In 2012

Twitter has long had one of the greatest assets on the internet: knowing what information is hot right now. But while many companies pay to receive and search Twitter’s stream of tweets for such diverse uses as predicting the stock market and finding flu outbreaks, Twitter itself has never done much with it.

That is about to change.

With today’s purchase of Summify, and the long-lasting rumors that Twitter may purchase Flipboard from Twitter board member Mike McCue, Twitter is preparing a wholly new service for users: Finding and delivering information relevant to you in real time.

Twitter: Your Smart Assistant?

Both Summify and Flipboard use smart learning algorithms to produce collections of information personalized to you. And both have strong followings, proving that they’re onto something.

Twitter goal is likely nothing short of replacing some of the news and search resources you use now. For an example of other services besides Summify and Flipboard that Twitter may emulate to a degree think of a personalized version of Newser, LinkedInToday or NewsWhip. Or, as one report put it: “[This] Could Turn Twitter Into Your Newspaper.”

Twitter could potentially offer a personalized dashboard of information that you customize, perhaps even including email and texts to create a single page on the internet for most of your information needs. And even if Twitter doesn’t offer such a dashboard itself, they could expand their API to help other services be created that could do so.