Twitter launches Premium APIs to plug the gap between free and enterprise data access

Twitter has launched Premium APIs to enable developers to access lower-cost subscription access to Twitter data. The Premium API offering plugs a gap between Twitter’s free, but basic public APIs that provide basic query functionality and foundational access to Twitter data, and its much more powerful, but much more expensive, enterprise APIs.

The move was announced in blog post by Adam Tornes from Twitter’s data product management team. The first release is the Search Tweets API, which launched yesterday in beta. Initially, this will provide access to the past 30 days of Twitter data, but will be expanded “soon” to enable access to the full history of Twitter data, right back to Jack Dorsey’s first Tweet in 2006.

These premium Search endpoints provide functionality beyond what’s currently available in Twitter’s standard search/Tweets endpoint, including more Tweets per request; higher rate limits; a counts endpoint that returns time-series counts of Tweets; more complex queries; and metadata enrichments, such as expanded URLs and improved profile geo information.

Pricing for these elevated tiers of the Search Tweets API starts at $149/month, (£113/month) with month-to-month contracts and scaled tiers of access based on the number of requests.

The blog post includes a quote from Madeline Parra, CEO and co-founder of Twizoo (now part of Skyscanner), who says: “I wish these premium APIs were available during our first few years. As we grew, we quickly ran into data limitations that prevented expansion. Ultimately, we raised a round of funding in order to accelerate our growth with the enterprise APIs. With the premium APIs, we could have bootstrapped our business longer and scaled more efficiently.”

Many developers will no doubt feel the same and welcome access to premium levels of data, much richer than they could get through the public APIs, but also, much more affordable than an enterprise API subscription.
Alongside the Premium APIs rollout, Twitter is also launching a self-serve developer portal that gives developers more transparent access to their data usage, allowing them to upgrade to increased levels of access and premium functionality as their needs change.

Developers can stay abreast of further developments via Twitter’s public roadmap, forum,  and a new developer resource centre containing documentation and guidance.