More Features and New Plans

We hope that you are having a great 2013! Today, we have some exciting announcements to share with you. We’ve been very busy working on a lof of new features for Alternion that we think you’ll like. Here are some of the most noteworthy ones:

Enhanced User Profiles

We now import your public statistics from Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Flickr and Picasa (numbers of friends, subscribers, following and followers). We also import your personal information from these networks and categorize it in your profile ‘About’ section in ‘General Information’, ‘Work and Education’, ‘Personal Details’, and ‘Statistics’. All that allows you to make your Alternion profiles not only your personal lifestreams, but also your professional and personal ‘web resumes’.

Of course, you still have full control over sharing your private information with others. In your Settings you can manage who can see your updates (which include your ‘About’ information) from each of your connected services.

Much Faster Email Aggregation

As you know, you can connect all of your IMAP and POP email accounts on Alternion, and view and send all of your email messages. It has proved to be one of the most popular features on Alternion, but many of you have asked to make it work faster. We heard you and now your emails on Alternion load almost instantly!

You can also now see which of your emails have attachments. And we have almost completed Gmail connection via API, so you will soon be able to connect Gmail without entering your password on Alternion.

A Secured Connection

The security and privacy of your data is our main priority. In our continued commitment to security, we have added an HTTPS protocol to all the critical pages, such as Sign up, Log in, and Settings. It means that your browser on these pages will be using a secure HTTPS connection to communicate with the website and ensure that the data you send (such as your username, password, email addresses and settings) remain private.

More Contact Pages

You can now see complete profile pages of your contacts from other networks, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Flickr and Picasa. It enables you to see all updates from each of your contacts in one place! You can also easily search and filter your contacts, send them direct messages on Alternion and Twitter, and more.

Facebook Pages

If you are an administrator of Facebook ‘fan’ pages you can now see all updates from all these page in your Alternion News Feed (your home page). Just choose a filter with an avatar of a particular Facebook page, and you can see and comment on all updates from your Facebook fans.

More Filters and Search Options

One of our major goals is to help you make your news feeds less cluttered and easily navigated. We have added more filters to your News Feed and Contacts section. We keep working on making Alternion your full address book, including your Facebook and Twitter lists, and many other improvements.

New Photo Uploader and Photo Pages

We have introduced major improvements to our photo uploader. You can now easily upload your photos to Alternion and share them, if you wish, to Facebook, Flickr, Picasa and Twitter.

We have also improved your photo pages and added a new Albums section with the albums of your friends and contacts from Facebook, Flickr, Picasa and Alternion.

Other Features and Improvements

We have introduced a ton of other large and small improvements, including better news and profile feeds, photo viewer with a fullscreen mode, photo pages for Alternion photos, better commenting, sharing and posting, recommendations for YouTube videos, and many others.

We hope that these improvements will make Alternion even more valuable for you. In 2013 we’ll be adding many more cool features and we look forward to your feedback!

Alternion 2.0

With a great pleasure we introduce today our brand new and improved version. It’s our biggest upgrade since the beta launch, and we’re excited to release it to the public. Welcome to Alternion 2.0, your social hub and communication center!

We’ve put a lot of efforts in our new version, but we’re just getting started. There are plenty of features in the new version, which we have not released yet. We’ll be gradually adding them during the coming weeks, so stay tuned. Our mission is to provide you with the best possible experience in social aggregation and management of all your social web and emails.

New Layout

We’ve introduced a new justified layout for all updates, photos and videos from your streams. We’ve combined it with the responsive design which adjusts the layout to your entire screen for your best viewing experience. If you prefer a more traditional layout, you can switch to ‘medium’ or 'large' viewing options, as well as show or hide detailed information and comments.

Our robust filters allow to discover interesting content from your social feeds. Now we’ve made them even more accessible and convenient, so you can filter updates, photos and videos from your different networks easier and more efficient. We’ve also improved our header navigation, as well as the navigation in our Photos, Videos, Contacts and Messages sections.

New User Profiles

Alternion is not only your personal social hub and communication center, but also a social network and a discovery center. You can browse and search Alternion users who like the same thing you do, and follow them to see all of their public updates in your combined news feed along with the updates from your contacts from other networks. Therefore, we have put a lot of efforts in the improving user profiles as well.

We’re releasing today new user profiles which follow the same interface principles as the other improvements in our new version, and feature improved navigation for your streams from other networks. You can bring your entire web presence to Alternion, manage your online identity, and make your profiles your personal lifestreams. You can easily filter your updates by types and service, change the layout, comment, retweet, reply, and much more. We’re finalising some additional enhancements in the user profiles and will release them in the coming weeks.

We’ve also made improvements in the user interface on all other pages. Alternion is packed with a plenty of features, so our goal has been to make your navigation as easy and convenient as possible.

You can see more screenshots and descriptions of the new pages and features on our new About page.

Live Updates

Automatic refresh of the news feed has been among our most requested features. We heard you and we’ve added live updates for your streams and emails. Now you don’t need to manually refresh your news feed or messages to get the new stuff. We download all updates in the background every 15 minutes and push them instantly to your pages.

In addition to that, we now import and update numbers of likes, comments, shares and retweets for the Facebook, Twitter and Google+ posts. We’ve also introduced live notifications, so you can stay alerted on any page and easily navigate to your new updates and messages.

Google+

Many users have asked us to integrate with Google+. Now we bring all of your updates from Google+, as well as your +1’s and shares. Google+ API doesn’t allow to import your news feed or your circles, only your profile feed and profile information, so we’ve tried to make the best from what is available from Google+ for third services.

Inline Images in Twitter News Feed

Our goal has also been to enrich your viewing experience. One of the features that we introduce today is inline images in your Twitter news feed. You can now see photos and videos directly in your Twitter streams, as well as open them in large size in a light box, play videos, retweet, and much more. You can also filter your Twitter news feed to see photos, videos, and links from the people you follow on Twitter.

Light Box

When you click any photo or video, you will see a ‘popup’ or ‘light box’ with this photo or video, detailed info, statistics, comments, and more. You can comment on the photo or video, as well as retweet, reply and favorite, and all these actions will be posted to the respective service.

You can change background of a light box by clicking a grey circle in the bottom left corner of your screen. Or you can sit back and enjoy a gallery of full screen photos on a black background, and choose to show or hide photo previews.

These are just a few of the improvements and features in our new version. We’re excited for you to check our new site and we look forward to hearing your feedback!

A Ton of New Stuff

Since our public launch five months ago, we've been rolling out a steady stream of enhancements. Spring is in the air, and we’d like to share some new cool features since our last update.

New Services and Enhanced Integration

We have launched integration with LinkedIn, which was one of the most popular requests. You can now see on Alternion all the news from your LinkedIn contacts as well as your own updates. We import and automatically update all of your LinkedIn contacts, which you can now combine with your friends and subscriptions from other services, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and Picasa. We also import your LinkedIn profile information, so you can create your ‘social resume’ by combining it with your ‘About’ information from other services.

Our Twitter integration has been enhanced with the ability to manage direct messages. You can see on Alternion all your Twitter messages and send new ones. We now also import your Twitter favorites and retweets. Editable retweets or “quote tweets” has been another desired feature, which is now available.

Have you visited our Explore Videos sections with the most popular YouTube videos? Not only can you browse and filter trending videos from all around the world, but you can now also search all YouTube videos, as well as videos from a particular channel.

Detailed Contact Pages

If you’re tired of checking your contacts on many different networks, our Contacts People section is here to help. You can now see full profile pages of your contacts from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Flickr and Picasa. They include the latest updates of each contact, their most recent profile information, photos, albums and videos. You can filter your contacts by service and by your lists on Facebook and Twitter.

We’re continuing to work on further enhancements to this section following our vision of making it your full-featured social address book.

Facebook Fan Pages

Another very popular request was support for Facebook pages. We heard you and we have added them! When you connect Facebook on Alternion we now automatically connect all your Facebook pages too (privately, of course). You can view their timelines, and you can comment, like, delete, and post new updates from any Page. You can manage an unlimited number of Facebook Pages, even together with other admins managing the same page. And yes, all that is free!

New Photo Viewer

It's now easier than ever to browse and view photos on Alternion. In the past, when you clicked on a photo, you were taken to a new page to view it, losing your place in an endless scroll of photos of your friends and contacts from Facebook, Flickr or Picasa. Now, clicking on a photo opens a lightbox where you can see photos in large size, with detailed info and comments. To go back to exactly where you were, just click outside the lightbox or press the ‘Esc’ key.

Our new photo viewer also allows you to easily browse between different photos (you can expand or hide a line of photo previews) or go to a full screen view, so you can sit back and enjoy a gallery of large photos on a black background. To browse between photos you can also use the ‘Left’ and ‘Right’ keys.

These features are available on all pages with photos, including your News Feed and Profile, as well as Contacts Photos and Explore Photos sections. If you’d like to go to a detailed photo page with a separate URL and share a photo with others, you can do it by clicking the “Photo page” icon on the photo in the lightbox.

Even More

We have also introduced many other features and tweaks. Some of the most newsworthy changes include:
- More convenient posting to other services, including the ability to select default accounts for your future posts. If you setup your default accounts, you will still be able to change them for each individual post.
- General optimization and speed enhancements. Our traffic growth has allowed us to identify a few spots which required attention, and we have made a number of back-end improvements to increase the speed and improve scalability. And we’ve never had any downtime, which confirms that our efforts in building a scalable platform have been paying off.
- We’ve added support for several more services, including Instagram, Pinterest and Pinboard. Even more services are coming, as one of our goals is to enable you to stay connected with all your social circles.
- Hundreds of smaller enhancements and bug fixes.

We’re excited for you to check these features out and we look forward to hearing your feedback.

What’s next? Well, we don’t want to spoil the surprise, but be prepared for a major upgrade in the Alternion design and functionality... We’ve been working on that for quite some time already, and we’re hoping to release it very soon. Stay tuned!

And We’re Live!

After six months in private beta, we’re happy to announce that Alternion is now live and open for everybody! You don’t need a beta invite anymore, which means no more wait, just a simple sign up or even simpler sign in with one click via Facebook or Twitter.

With Alternion you can bring all your social web and email to one place. You can connect your profiles from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and any of 220+ other services. You can connect your email accounts from Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, Hotmail, AOL and any other IMAP or POP account. Not only can Alternion be your personal aggregation center, but you can also view and comment on updates, photos and videos of your contacts from other networks. We are building Alternion as your ultimate communication center, social address book and much more.

Many of you have asked when you’ll be able to share your Alternion profile with your friends on other networks. The answer is - right now! On your Alternion profile you can collect all of your updates and content from other networks, and share them with your friends from anywhere. Don’t want to share too much? No problem! On Alternion you have full control over your privacy, so you can choose to open as much or as little of your online identity as you wish.

What’s also very cool is that if you’ve connected your Facebook or Twitter accounts to Alternion previously, you can now sign in to your Alternion profile with one click via Facebook and Twitter Connect buttons. (Of course, you still have the option to sign in with your Alternion username and password). If you haven’t connected Facebook or Twitter yet, give it a try to make your future logins to Alternion easier.

We look forward to the very exciting times ahead. We’re very grateful to all of you who gave feedback, spread the word about Alternion on social networks and blogs, or simply used our site and helped us understand what’s working and what’s not. We’ve listened to all your suggestions and will continue to do so.

We’re also excited to announce several new features with our public release.

1. Your “Social Resume”

One of the most requested features was ability to export your profile information (your ‘About’ section) from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr. Naturally, not everybody wants to write about themselves over and over again on different networks, let alone keep those bits of information in sync. Well, you don’t have to do that anymore. When you connect either of these services to Alternion, we export all of your profile information from these services to your Alternion Profile page.

If you make changes in your ‘About’ sections on other sites, we’ll export these updates to Alternion. And as with all other updates and content on our site, you can filter profile information by different services.

We’re working hard on connecting LinkedIn, so you’ll soon be able to add your professional resume, too.

Of course, your privacy settings will apply to your profile information as well. For example, if you choose to show your Facebook updates only to the people you follow on Alternion, or even keep them private, the same settings will apply to your profile information from Facebook.

2. Creating and Editing Facebook and Twitter Lists

Your already had the ability to aggregate all of your Facebook and Twitter lists on Alternion, including updates and contacts from these lists. Now you can also create and edit or delete your Facebook and Twitter lists directly on Alternion. To do that, simply go to Contacts People section, choose Facebook or Twitter in the left menu, and you’ll be able to edit your existing lists as well as to create and manage new ones.

Fresh Look, More Networks and Lots of New Features

Today we’re excited to release a new version of Alternion. We’ve been working on it for the past 4 months, so you’ll find quite a few new features. We’re also introducing a new look of the site that will make everything cleaner and easier to use. All these enhancements are another step towards our goal of creating an ultimate social aggregation and content discovery service.

If you visited Alternion during the last couple of weeks, you might have already noticed many of these improvements live in your news feed, profile and other pages as we have been gradually introducing new features to test them live and gather feedback.

We’ve been very busy with the development lately, but we promise to update our blog more frequently from now on :)

So, what improvements await you when you login to the new Alternion?

1. New Design

You can see many interface improvements in your news feed, profile, photos and videos of your contacts, email and direct messages, settings, and most of the other pages. Our first priority, since we started developing Alternion has been to keep everything very clean and easy to use. With the amount of new features and sections we’ve been adding recently, it made sense to rethink the layout.

We kept the general structure, but improved many navigation elements to make it easier for you to navigate between different filters and pages, as well as enrich your overall site experience.

Welcome to Alternion!

The web is becoming more fragmented every day with the numbers of user accounts, friends, followers, updates, photos, videos, blogs, email and instant messages increasing exponentially. Our goal is to help you put all these pieces together.

It’s been a very exiting journey to develop our vision from the first ideas and sketches that started over a year ago. Now we are ready to open the doors to our first beta users and we look forward to seeing you among them!

Alternion.com enables you to combine and manage all of your social accounts and emails. We are building a social communication center where you can easily stay in touch with your friends from other networks and access the latest updates.

So, how exactly does it work? Here is a brief glance of what you can do on Alternion:

View and comment your friend updates, photos and videos from Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and other networks.

Combine and manage all of your own social networking updates from 220+ services, and collect all your posts, photos, and videos in one place. With full control over your privacy settings, you can manage who can see your information and updates.

Connect any of your IMAP/POP email accounts, and collect and send all of your emails.

Automatically combine all of your contacts from other services and their latest updates in your ‘social address book’.

Connect multiple accounts, post to other services, follow other users and see their updates from all their networks, and much more.

You can read more in our sections About and Help.

And we're just getting started! There are many more exciting features in development, including deeper integration with many networks, so stay tuned. In this blog we'll be posting site development updates (unless we come up with something more entertaining) and will be happy to hear your comments and ideas. Also, please feel free to contact us on our Facebook Page, Twitter, via our customer support forum on GetSatisfaction, or simply by email.

Already tired of reading and ready for a test drive? Alternion.com is currently in private beta. We want to make sure that everything works smoothly for a relatively limited number of beta users before we open the site to everybody. If you don't have an access yet and are interested, please request an invite on our home page.

However, if you cannot wait and absolutely have to get the access now, we have a workaround for you :) "Like" us on Facebook and send us an email with your Facebook name. Then we won’t have a choice, but to email you an invite code right away...