February 9, 2009

Friendbar Review: Streaming Your Twitter Friend Updates

By admin

Friendbar is a Firefox toolbar addon that displays a stream of text and photo updates from your Twitter and Facebook friends. After installing it and logging in, you’ll only see your Twitter friend updates but you can reply or retweet them using the toolbar. It also helps to create a tiny URL for the webpage you are viewing, if you’re interested in sending out some tweets.

friendbar toolbar

It operates like a news ticker, displaying updates constantly. However, instead of slow scrolling motion, updates are changed through a fast swooshing motion, which can be very distracting when you have a lot of friends or people who update rapidly. A different choice of update change animations would be great.

The toolbar also comes with a search box for Google or Twitter search. This is pretty much redundant since firefox already offers a search box for this. The settings are quite basic for a new toolbar and it is missing the option to play a sound when you receive a reply or direct message, which would help a lot in differentiating between those and other updates.

While you can scroll left and right through updates by clicking on the arrows at either end, a pause or ‘time-out’ option would be very useful indeed, especially when you need to concentrate but don’t want to hide the toolbar yet.

All in all if you don’t mind installing another toolbar, Friendbar might be something you’ll enjoy. Its very good in two scenarios: 1)when you follow too many people (more manageable) and 2)when you practically live in your firefox browser the whole day. Still, give it a try if you’re adventurous. The developers will iterate and improve the toolbar soon enough.

If you’ve got any questions about the toolbar, send a message to @friendbar.