Can't get enough of Twitter? Then mobile device maker Peek has just the gadget for you.
Peek Tuesday rolled out TwitterPeek, a device built exclusively to read and post messages to the Twitter microblogging service. It's available now exclusively from Amazon.com.
For end users, the handheld device offers to keep them tied to Twitter while they're on the go without having to spend big bucks for a smartphone or data service plan. At the same time, TwitterPeek promises more functionality than users get from SMS messaging to Twitter via a basic cell phone.
The catch, of course, is that TwitterPeek is not a smartphone: It does Twitter; that's it. But it still sports some nifty features. Pricing for the device starts at $99, which includes six months of unlimited nationwide service. After that, the service costs $7.95 per month. Or users can spend $199 for the device and lifetime unlimited service.
Billed as "the world's first Twitter mobile device," TwitterPeek includes a color screen, a full QWERTY keyboard and promises four to five days of battery life. In addition to sending and receiving Tweets and direct messages, users can also view links as plain text as well as pictures posted to Twitter via the Twitpic image service.
Peek is touting the device for both Twitter die-hards and new users. "Even businesses that Twitter will dig TwitterPeek as a convenient way to stay connected with their customers," said Amol Sarva, founder and CEO of Peek, in a statement.
Early reviews of the device, however, are tepid.
In the spirit of Twitter, the Boston Globe offered this 140-character description: "The interface design of the new TwitterPeek device totally misses what makes Twitter work: absorbing lots of short messages with a glance."
While lauding TwitterPeek for its eye-catching design, PC Magazine called the device "a neat idea executed poorly," citing slow performance and a clumsy interface.
TwitterPeek is available now in gray or aqua, just in time for the anticipated holiday shopping blitz.