Twitter announced in February that it would no longer provide free access to its application programming interface (API). Twitter has finally shut down its free API, which is breaking a lot of apps and websites. Initially scheduled for early February, the company had postponed the cut-off without providing a new date.
New Twitter API Plans
At the end of March, Twitter confirmed some of the details and pricing for the new version of its API. The new plans come in three flavors: free, basic, and enterprise, each with its own set of features and pricing. For more information, please see the image below:
Twitter Shuts Free API Access
However, since last week’s announcement, the company appears to have begun disabling access to its free developer tools for thousands of developers.
Several developers of apps and other services have complained over the past few days that the Twitter API is broken. Apps and websites like Flipboard and Substack that relied on Twitter’s API to allow for the sharing of content to and from Twitter are now experiencing a breakdown in that functionality.
Additionally, the developer of a tool called “Cheap Bots Done Quick” that lets users make their own Twitter bots said they were informed they no longer had access to Twitter’s API.
In addition, many users are complaining about the enterprise plan for accessing API at the enterprise level because they believe it will be prohibitively expensive. According to some rumors, the enterprise plan could cost as much as $40,000 per month or even more.
As a result of enterprise level pricing being too costly for them to operate, Social Bearing, Twitter Search & Analytics for Tweets has already announced the project’s termination.
Another report suggests that Twitter hasn’t been very open with its developers about these changes or what they entail. Even developers who are willing to pay for Twitter’s API have been impacted by the shutdown, as the pricing for more advanced enterprise tiers remains unknown.
For plans that are free or basic, Twitter Dev team is currently requesting that developers reapply if their developer account application was under review in the previous few months. They also confirmed that they have implemented a new self-service process to speed up approval.
🚨 If your developer account application was under review over the last few months, we kindly ask you to re-apply if you are interested in subscribing to our new Twitter API Free or Basic plans.
Our new self-service process should enable you to get access in no time! 🙏
— Twitter Dev (@TwitterDev) April 4, 2023
Twitter’s implementation of this major step in its effort to monetize the platform has been very sloppy so far. The company has not stated whether researchers can continue to use their APIs for free. More official information on these topics should be available in the near future.