Bitly is best known for its original intended purpose: shortening links. Lately, though, the Bitly team has been branching out. The latest project by Bitly is called “Realtime,” and it’s unlike anything the Bitly team has rolled out before. Realtime is, essentially, a search engine of sorts. Yet, unlike other search engines, Realtime aims to allow users to search social media posts using keywords. Right now, the project is in private beta, but it should be available to the public relatively soon. Here’s how it all works.
Searching Social Media
There’s a lot of news to be found on a site like Twitter. So much news that attempting to read through a Twitter feed around the clock is nearly impossible. Instead of attempting to spend countless hours watching a Twitter newsfeed, Realtime by Bitly wants to make the process of finding what you want to read easier. This new site will allow users to type in a specific searchword, choose the social network a user wants to search, and instantly the news articles that pertain to the keyword and network will pop up.
For example, you could ask Realtime to search for “Investment” on Twitter, and you would come up with all the Twitter news stories that include the world investment. For many who use Twitter as a main source of news, Realtime will be invaluable. But, Bitly has to perfect the search engine first. Right now, Realtime is pulling up searches that don’t always correspond with keywords, but that’s why the site is still in beta.
A Really Smart Move
Realtime by Bitly will prove to be one of the most useful tools out there, if Bitly can perfect the search engine. At present, attempting to find specific news stories by using a site like Twitter can be an impossible task. Sure, Twitter has a search bar, but that search tool isn’t exactly the best. In addition to Twitter, Realtime may allow users to pull up news articles on Facebook, LinkedIn, and various other social networks. The idea here is to allow those who live for (and by) news to find stories as fast as possible. After all, there are plenty of smaller news stories circulating on a site like Twitter that most people never read.
Keeping up to date with news is really tough, but sites like Realtime by Bitly aim to make this process a heck of a lot easier. As mentioned, Realtime is currently in private beta, but if you have a Bitly account, you can add your name, email, and date of birth in the provided user information boxes on the Bitly site, and you will be placed on the Realtime user list. There’s no word yet as to when Realtime will become publically available, though Bitly won’t want to sit on this idea too long, and a beta launch usually means that the real or public launch is right around the corner. If you have a Bitly account, will you sign up for a Realtime account? Do you think that Realtime sounds like a useful tool? Come on, folks, don’t be shy, let me know what you think.