Another Contender Emerges: Posterous Takes On TwitPic With New API

The race is on to become the dominant media sharing site on Twitter, with favorites like TwitPic and newcomers including PhotoBucket’s TwitGoo vying for popularity as Twitter begins to hit the mainstream. Now Posterous is looking to join the race with a new API that developers can integrate into their Twitter apps with a minimal amount of effort.

We’re big fans of Posterous, the dead-simple blogging tool that makes it incredibly easy to post text, photos, and other media online. To post a photo or post to the site, you simply send an Email message to the generic address, and the site does the rest. And you can optionally have the service automatically syndicate each of these posts to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and a number of other services.

Now, Posterous is looking to become even more convenient. Its new API allows developers to add Posterous support to their Twitter clients, which means you’ll soon be able to send photos to the service from your iPhone or desktop much the same way you would with TwitPic or one of its many competitors (assuming the clients integrate the service – more on that later).

But Posterous isn’t looking to simply serve as yet another competitor offering a near-identical featureset. Instead, the company believes that its blogging platform is superior to the basic photo galleries offered by other services (and Michael agrees – he’s been posting his photos here). The service supports multiple photo uploads at once, which are automatically placed into photo galleries, and can also generate embeddable players for audio and video files (though its API is starting off with support for images only). Users can optionally use their own domain names with the service, which means that they can more easily track analytics. And finally, users can download media in its original format, while some competitors only offer compressed versions for download.

I prefer Posterous to the other image platforms because it’s much more flexible. But as I wrote yesterday about TwitGoo, the key to the service’s success (at least as a TwitPic alternative) will lie in getting integrated into popular Twitter clients like TweetDeck or Tweetie. It’s not clear how selective these clients are at this point, but they’re going to have have to start making choices, otherwise users are going to be overwhelmed with the number of services they have at their disposal. That said, Posterous is making the process as easy as possible on developers, as it uses the “exact same methods, parameters, and response codes” as TwitPic.