We now have two major projects operating on the web that aims to provide an alternative to Twitter.
App.net was recent funded and is likely to make more news in the coming months.
Heello is the older one which has been operating for a couple of months now. Heello developers have announced their new edition which would be out in the near future.
App.net currently has no plans to support free users on their platform. Heello on the other hand wants to cater to both. The company said:
With Heello I’m taking a different approach. I know there will be some users who can’t pay to use a service and we don’t want to exclude them from this open platform, but for those who want to pay and support a service they use and love, we’ll offer a pro account. Free accounts will see ads at some point, albeit organic and as unobtrusive as possible. The ad system will be built in house and handled internally by us. I want to keep high standards for ads allowed in. Pro accounts will be ad free and we want to hear any suggestion you have as to what you would like to have in a pro account. I think this hybrid approach will be a good balance for everyone.
Twitter has just come out with more details on the changes that are going to be applicable on their API in the future. The news is not entirely bad but it does affect a lot of third party developers.
Remains to be seen if either Heello or App.net are able to attract enough users in the future to make them a solid alternative to the Twitter platform.