Tapbots, the maker of several popular iOS and Mac apps, has made its App.net client for iOS, Netbot, free in order to “spur adoption” of the budding ad-free social network. The iPhone and iPad versions of the app will remain free for an “unspecified period of time” according to the company’s post on App.net announcing the price drop.
The price drop also coincided with the release of version 1.3, which adds support for private messaging.
App.net was created by entrepreneur and developer Dalton Caldwell. It’s an alternative to Twitter that is promised to remain ad free and flexible for developers. App.net lets users get a bit more verbose than Twitter, allowing 256 characters per post compared to Twitter’s limit of 140 characters. However, App.net isn’t free – you’ll need to shell out $5 per month or $36 per year to use App.net. In addition to posting privileges, an App.net account now comes with 10 GB of storage that can be used by client apps for file storage.
The iPad and iPhone versions of Netbot debuted in October at $4.99 each. Netbot looks exactly like Tweetbot for Twitter though it has a different color scheme and some slightly different functionality to reflect what App.net is capable of. Since it’s a paid service and doesn’t have nearly as many users as Twitter (and it’s uncertain that it ever will), the average person probably isn’t going to be interested in App.net and a client app like Netbot. However, if you prefer a smaller audience for your musings and want to avoid the advertising that Twitter forces on its users, App.net is the way to go and Netbot is definitely an excellent iPhone and iPad client for it.