Twitter takes a U-turn, allows free API access to public utilities

Twitter stopped offering free access to its application programming interface in February and instead started a paid version of its API.

  • Published: May 3, 2023 12:05 PM IST


  • Twitter stopped free access to its API in February.
  • Twitter offers free access to its API to testers and developers.
  • Twitter API Basic plan starts at USD 100.
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Ever since Elon Musk took over Twitter, policy “flip-flop” has become a routine for the micro-blogging site. On April 20, Twitter removed legacy blue ticks from all accounts and after the chaos that followed, it decided to return them to some celebrities and accounts with high follower count. Also Read - Twitter to get 15-second forward, picture-in-picture mode next week, says Elon Musk

Now in a sudden turn of events, Twitter has allowed free access of its API to public utilities. Twitter’s Twitter Dev handle tweeted that verified government or publicly owned services that tweet whether alerts, transport updates and emergency notification may use its API for free. Also Read - G7 countries call to have global technical standards for AI

Twitter stopped offering free access to its application programming interface in February and instead started a paid version of its API. This restriction on Twitter’s API access forced many accounts that were issuing emergency alerts to abandon Twitter.

Twitter still offers free access to its API under its new plans. However, free access is limited to testers and developers with a cap on monthly tweets.

What is an application programming interface?

Application Programming Interface (API) is a framework through which computer programs talk to each other to request and deliver information. It allows people to build software that integrates with other platforms like Twitter. For example, a solution that helps a company to respond to customer feedback on Twitter.

These APIs even allow the creation of searches for publicly available data which can be used for research, marketing and other purposes.

Twitter API pricing

Twitter announced its three-tier API pricing in March this year. Twitter offers free access to its APIs only to testers and developers who need to write posts. They are allowed 1,500 tweets per month at the app level with one app ID.
Twitter API’s Basic plan cost USD 100 which is approximately Rs 8,200. It comes with a cap on the number of monthly tweets and allows two app IDs.

The last is the Enterprise plan which has multiple subscription tiers costing thousands of dollars per month with an access to a lot of features.

Meanwhile, on Monday when a minor edit in the bio of legacy verified Twitter users’ accounts resulted in them getting back their blue tick, albeit briefly. The blue tick disappeared once they refreshed the page.

Some Twitter users even got their blue ticks back by adding a few spaces in their bio. The blue tick even showed, “This account is verified because it’s notable in government, news, entertainment, or any other notable category.”

  • Published Date: May 3, 2023 12:05 PM IST
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