Twitter introduces a new price for its API.

Twitter introduces new price for its API.
Twitter introduces new price for its API.
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Twitter has finally unveiled its new API price structures after a long delay. The platform’s pricing strategy has been divided into three tiers. The first tier is free but with limited functionality. Users of this tier can post up to 1,500 tweets per month but do not have access to other vital functions. This tier is mainly designed for bots and testing purposes. The second tier costs $200, and developers can post up to 3,000 tweets monthly at the user level and up to 50,000 at the app level. In addition, it offers a read limit of 10,000 tweets per month.

The third tier is intended for commercial projects and businesses, and the pricing and limitations are yet to be determined. According to the company, access to this category would be enough to satisfy the needs of businesses and their customers. However, Twitter still needs to clarify access for researchers or academics who rely on this platform, and the company is working on it.

Twitter’s revamped API tiers were announced a month and a half after new CEO Elon Musk promised a big shake-up of the system. The company listed three tiers — free, basic, and enterprise — and provided some details on their prices and read-and-write limits. It also linked to signup pages, which offer links to get started with the first two tiers and to express an interest in the third. The company says older tiers will be depreciated “over the next 30 days.”

The free tier offers write-only access with the ability to post 1,500 tweets per month at no cost. The basic tier is a $100 per month subscription for hobbyists, with the option of posting 3,000 tweets per month at the user level or 50,000 tweets per month at the app level. The read limit is 10,000 tweets. The enterprise tier promises to offer “commercial-level access that meets your and your customer’s specific needs” as well as “managed services [from] a dedicated account team.” No specific price was listed, but it was previously reported that a “low-cost enterprise plan” could cost as much as $42,000 a month.

Some developers have said they would have to kill their projects or pass the fees onto users in response to Twitter’s announcement. Developers have also called the free tier “terrible” because of the limited post cap and the apparent inability to read simple information like tweets, likes, and follows from the platform. However, other developers have said they can afford the new pricing and will continue supporting the platform.

Academic researchers have been critical of Twitter’s proposed changes to its API rules, given how much they have relied on the platform’s generous academic API to conduct research. The official details of the new tiers offer far fewer details on the options for academic researchers in the future, noting only that Twitter is “looking at new ways to continue serving this community.” It also says academics are free to sign up for any of the three other tiers.

Since taking over the social media network, Elon Musk has focused on cutting costs and boosting revenue, firing thousands of employees and doubling down on the company’s paid Twitter Blue subscription service. Although Musk initially justified the API changes by saying the free services were “being abused badly” by “bot scammers & opinion manipulators,” the changes made to Twitter’s API can also be seen as an attempt to squeeze better margins out of the platform’s developer community.

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