Another former Twitter app developer has turned their attention to Mastodon in the wake of Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover which put an end to third-party clients. Launching today, a new app from the developer of the Twitter app Chirp is bringing Mastodon’s social network to your Apple Watch. Stomp, as the new app is called, offers a full Mastodon experience for the watch’s small screen, including the ability to view your timeline, check trends, access your lists, search, send messages, and more.
Stomp’s developer Will Bishop has been interested in building apps for Apple Watch for years, having previously developed a micro version of Reddit called Nano before launching his Twitter app Chirp for Apple Watch in 2018.
But last Saturday, Chirp finally shut down as a result of the API changes enacted under Elon Musk’s ownership of Twitter, which has since rebranded as “X.”
Chirp isn’t the only Twitter app to shut down in recent months.
Twitter’s/X’s new policies had already put an end to other third-party Twitter clients like Twitterrific, Tapbbots’ Tweetbot, Echofone, Fenix, and others. And, like Bishop, several of those former Twitter app developers refocused on building for Mastodon instead. Tapbots, for example, gave up on Twitter and launched Ivory for Mastodon users. Fenix’s developer launched the Mastodon app Woolly, and the developer of the Aviary Twitter app created the Mastodon app Mammoth.
Stomp’s biggest differentiator from the rest of these new third-party Mastodon clients is, of course, that it runs on the Apple Watch.
Explains Bishop, “Since Twitter/X’s acquisition, people have been asking me to build a Chirp-esque app for Mastodon, and Stomp is my answer to that.”
“Stomp gives Mastodon the Chirp treatment, including all the major features you’d expect from an iPhone Mastodon app, but in my trademark Apple Watch fashion,” he adds.
Beyond that, it’s a fairly comprehensive Mastodon app. You can endlessly scroll your Mastodon timeline, like and boost posts, view images and videos, and even reply to posts right from the watch’s small screen. You can also tap on links, mentions, and hashtags as you could on an iPhone app and check in on what’s Trending.
However, when you click on links in Stomp, you’re served a notice that explains you’ll be asked to sign in as a workaround for viewing webpages on the Apple Watch. With another tap, you’re then able to view the webpage in the Stomp app. This extra step is required because third-party apps aren’t technically allowed to open links or display web pages.
Stomp’s way around this is to leverage the third-party sign-in support on Apple Watch — something that Apple permits in order to allow third-party logins through providers like Google or Facebook. That’s why the app prompts you to “Sign in” to display the website.
Though Stomp is a free download on the App Store, not all its features are available for free.
Via an in-app purchase, you can opt to upgrade to “Stomp Pro.” This allows you to create and reply to posts, use direct messages, and access search and lists.
But Bishop is offering several different ways to pay, including “pay what you want” one-time purchases of $2.99, $5.99, or $9.99 as well as a monthly subscription of $0.99 or an annual subscription of $9.99. An in-app Tip Jar is also available.
Stomp is rolling out today to the App Store.