3rd party twitter apps for education – SMS broadcast

Twe2 - Steps to getting twitter updates via SMS Last month I posted about Twitter in Higher Education. This post, while very recent, has already made it to my top 5 read posts. This has spurred me to make some follow up posts. In particular I’ve been looking for 3rd party applications that use twitter which might be useful in an academic setting. My starting point was the Twitter Fan Wiki, which has compiled a huge list of Twitter Apps. One particular application which took my interest was Twe2.com.
Twe2.com is a free service which allows you to receive SMS updates. Towards the end of July 2008 I highlighted how you could use twitter as a free SMS text message broadcast system. The idea being that students could follow a twitter feed for a class or course receiving updates on their mobile phone i.e. assignment reminders or general administration etc. Unfortunately 2 weeks after making this post twitter pulled the service citing rise costs :-(.
Twe2 have cleverly found a way covering the costs of this service by including by adding an advert at the end of each SMS update. Twe2 fully integrates into twitter and there is very little additional setup. I’ve prepared this sort screencast to show you how to do this.

Example of using twe2 as a free SMS text broadcast system from Martin Hawksey on Vimeo.
In my screencast I also mention another 3rd party application twitterfeed. This service allows you to convert any RSS feed into twitter tweets. So for example if your course uses a VLE which creates an RSS for news or announcements this can be automatically be pushed to your class twitter account which will then be sent to any student who has registered their mobile phone with twe2.


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