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Twitter Tests Improvements to Tweets With Photos & Video

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Twitter confirms it’s testing long requested updates to publishing tweets with photos, and working on YouTube integration for a better video experience.

With these tests Twitter is working on ways to address several of the most widespread complaints from users.

When it comes to posting photos on Twitter, users express dissatisfaction with how images are cropped in the timeline, and the extent to which photos are compressed when uploaded.

To address those issues Twitter is testing changes to the photo publishing process which includes the option for 4K image uploads.

Twitter’s file compression is a subject of complaint against video uploads as well. To address that, Twitter is working on ways for users to view higher quality video through YouTube integration.

Here’s more about the confirmed tests, which may eventually be rolled out more widely.

Larger Images in Twitter Timeline

Twitter is testing a change to tweets with photos that displays full size images in users’ timelines.

With this update, what users see in the tweet composer is how the tweet will look when it’s published. No more cropped images that have to be clicked on to see in full.

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This is currently being tested in the Twitter app for iOS and Android. If you’re part of the test group you’ll begin seeing full size images in your timeline.

Until this change is fully rolled out, photos tweeted by people in the test group may continue to appear cropped to other users who are not part of the test.

Higher Resolution Photo Uploads

Twitter is testing an update that will allow users to tweet images in 4K resolution.

This change makes it possible for users to tweet high resolution photos that retain their original quality.

Currently, the maximum file size for image uploads on Twitter is 5MB. A photo in 4K resolution  can be many times that size.

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Twitter doesn’t specify what the new file size limit will be, other than saying “up to 4K.”

Users who are part of this test will find the new setting for high quality images in the “Data usage” section.

YouTube Videos in Twitter Timeline

Compared to other sites, Twitter offers a substandard experience when it comes to tweets containing videos, and tweets with YouTube links.

The maximum resolution for videos on Twitter is 720p. If users upload a video in 1080p or 4K it will get compressed, resulting in a significant loss of detail.

Twitter isn’t increasing the resolution for videos as it’s doing with photos, but is working on offering a better experience for YouTube videos.

With this test, when users tweet a link to a YouTube video it will become playable in the timeline.

Users who are dissatisfied with Twitter’s compression of native video uploads can publish their full resolution video to YouTube and tweet a link to it.

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This will, hopefully, allow users to view it in a higher resolution than what Twitter would normally allow.

Twitter is testing embedded YouTube videos on iOS only at this time.

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NEWS

Google December Product Reviews Update Affects More Than English Language Sites? via @sejournal, @martinibuster

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Google’s Product Reviews update was announced to be rolling out to the English language. No mention was made as to if or when it would roll out to other languages. Mueller answered a question as to whether it is rolling out to other languages.

Google December 2021 Product Reviews Update

On December 1, 2021, Google announced on Twitter that a Product Review update would be rolling out that would focus on English language web pages.

The focus of the update was for improving the quality of reviews shown in Google search, specifically targeting review sites.

A Googler tweeted a description of the kinds of sites that would be targeted for demotion in the search rankings:

“Mainly relevant to sites that post articles reviewing products.

Think of sites like “best TVs under $200″.com.

Goal is to improve the quality and usefulness of reviews we show users.”

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Google also published a blog post with more guidance on the product review update that introduced two new best practices that Google’s algorithm would be looking for.

The first best practice was a requirement of evidence that a product was actually handled and reviewed.

The second best practice was to provide links to more than one place that a user could purchase the product.

The Twitter announcement stated that it was rolling out to English language websites. The blog post did not mention what languages it was rolling out to nor did the blog post specify that the product review update was limited to the English language.

Google’s Mueller Thinking About Product Reviews Update

Screenshot of Google's John Mueller trying to recall if December Product Review Update affects more than the English language

Screenshot of Google's John Mueller trying to recall if December Product Review Update affects more than the English language

Product Review Update Targets More Languages?

The person asking the question was rightly under the impression that the product review update only affected English language search results.

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But he asserted that he was seeing search volatility in the German language that appears to be related to Google’s December 2021 Product Review Update.

This is his question:

“I was seeing some movements in German search as well.

So I was wondering if there could also be an effect on websites in other languages by this product reviews update… because we had lots of movement and volatility in the last weeks.

…My question is, is it possible that the product reviews update affects other sites as well?”

John Mueller answered:

“I don’t know… like other languages?

My assumption was this was global and and across all languages.

But I don’t know what we announced in the blog post specifically.

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But usually we try to push the engineering team to make a decision on that so that we can document it properly in the blog post.

I don’t know if that happened with the product reviews update. I don’t recall the complete blog post.

But it’s… from my point of view it seems like something that we could be doing in multiple languages and wouldn’t be tied to English.

And even if it were English initially, it feels like something that is relevant across the board, and we should try to find ways to roll that out to other languages over time as well.

So I’m not particularly surprised that you see changes in Germany.

But I also don’t know what we actually announced with regards to the locations and languages that are involved.”

Does Product Reviews Update Affect More Languages?

While the tweeted announcement specified that the product reviews update was limited to the English language the official blog post did not mention any such limitations.

Google’s John Mueller offered his opinion that the product reviews update is something that Google could do in multiple languages.

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One must wonder if the tweet was meant to communicate that the update was rolling out first in English and subsequently to other languages.

It’s unclear if the product reviews update was rolled out globally to more languages. Hopefully Google will clarify this soon.

Citations

Google Blog Post About Product Reviews Update

Product reviews update and your site

Google’s New Product Reviews Guidelines

Write high quality product reviews

John Mueller Discusses If Product Reviews Update Is Global

Watch Mueller answer the question at the 14:00 Minute Mark

[embedded content]

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