Twitter’s Evan Williams Rolls Out @Anywhere at SXSW — A Facebook Connect Rival? (Now With Keynote Video)
In what looks from afar like it could be the biggest news from SXSW Interactive thus far, Twitter CEO Evan Williams is currently rolling out Twitter’s new @Anywhere platform, a possible Facebook Connect rival which could transform Twitter into a one-stop, more seamlessly interactive entry point into third-party sites, including eBay, Digg, and nytimes.com.
CNET’s Caroline McCarthy reports live from the scene:
[Twitter CEO Evan Williams] announced the “@Anywhere” platform, a way to pull Twitter links and data onto partner sites and media outlets. A brief demo of @Anywhere showed off “hovercards” that bring up Twitter information with a mouse-over, let readers or users connect with their Twitter accounts much like Facebook Connect, or explore more specific possibilities, like instantly following a newspaper columnist’s Twitter account by clicking on his or her byline.
“Discovery is one of the hardest challenges,” Williams said. “It’s putting these in context where you’re already aware of them…Twitter is a very easy way to keep in touch.” The company has 13 launch partners, including Digg, The New York Times, MSNBC.com, eBay, Amazon, and Bing.
Read the rest of McCarthy’s @Anywhere coverage at The Social.
Update2: You can follow @anywhere on Twitter; despite its recent launch, it already has more than 2,500 followers, and counting. As a fun parlor game, try going to its Twitter page and clicking “refresh” every few minutes; it might not be Conan-like yet, but we’re expecting a substantial blowup.
Update3: Below, a two-minute video of Ev Williams’ keynote announcement introducing @Anywhere. Don’t mind the buzzing and graininess. (h/t VentureBeat.)