What Twitter Needs to Do to Become Apple

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- For as much as I love and respect Facebook ( FB), from just about every standpoint, Twitter outclasses it.

Utility. Design. Overall user experience. Ultimately, Twitter will stand the test of time and end up as dominant and ubiquitous over generations as the newspaper. Because the people who lead Twitter and the wider new/social media revolution embrace change and dictate the future, the medium will not suffer to the extent print has.

I make my case for Twitter over Facebook -- as a daily habit and sustainable platform -- in August's Why Twitter Will Live and Facebook Will Die.

That said, Twitter needs to be better. Popular snark says Apple ( AAPL) should buy Twitter. That's wrong on so many levels.

First, the "buy Twitter" talk (which I have entertained in the past) is little more than knee-jerk reaction to the inane hysteria that surrounds Apple today, none of which, by the way, emanates from Cupertino. It's all media- and analyst-driven external crap.

Second, Twitter should want no part of an Apple buyout. I bet Jack Dorsey would be against it. Dick Costolo, too. I would hope less-well-off employees would not endorse it merely for the cash grab, as enticing as it might be. If Apple pulls Twitter into the Apple fold, Twitter loses its authenticity.

Instead, Twitter should be in the business of pulling others into its fold.

It has serious leverage in this area.

Here's the theory: As our use of mobile devices matures, if you want to thrive as a standalone app, you're going to need to put forth an incredibly compelling and consistent offering. People do not have the time or the inclination to thumb through dozens of apps to complete every-day utilitarian, informational and social tasks.

In other words, we have endless choice vis-a-vis the number of apps we can download. Then, once loaded to a device, we prioritize where, when and how often we will access each app. If I am in transit, sitting at my desk or just chilling on the couch, I want a one-stop shop with an as uncluttered and smooth interface as possible for performing as many functions as possible.

As it stands, you reach for your smartphone -- often an iPhone or Samsung product -- to do something. Whatever. Get news. Check weather. Send a message. A growing number of us do this constantly 24/7. Twitter can be, should be and already sort of is (for some) the go-to app when the smartphone comes out of your pocket, purse or attache case!

From there, it's all about convenience, including as many key tasks as part of the Twitter platform. So, a user does not have to leave Twitter to do X, Y or Z. The tricky part - this convenience cannot come at the expense of Twitter's intuitive and slick interface.

These ideas merely illustrate this larger notion of integration and convenience. Of making Twitter a one-stop, daily habit shop.

Fix "Favorite." Buy Pocket. I "favorite" a Tweet -- often an article -- as I am moving through my Twitter feed. Other than using "Favorite" the way you use "Like" on Facebook, that's the main function -- to save a Tweet, usually containing a link to an article, that you want to read later. But it never goes down that way.

How many of us have hundreds, if not thousands of Tweets favorited that we never go back to. In fact, unless you really know your way around Twitter it's difficult to know where to find your favorited Tweets.

If you connect the two services, you can use Pocket in conjunction with Twitter. Go here for a quick description of the Pocket app. Formerly "Read Later," Pocket lets you save an article to view later on any connected device.

But, if I Pocket something on Twitter, I ultimately have to leave Twitter and go to Pocket to read that story. Find a way to integrate the two. Get rid of "Favorite" and bring Pocket into the Twitter fold.

Along similar lines, Twitter should look at services such as Klout. As standalone apps something like Klout has no future. Simple as that. However, it can provide utility and value if it's part of something bigger. If users can launch it and proceed to use it within the Twitter platform. You should rarely, if ever, have to leave. That should be Twitter's goal, or at least one of them.

I initiated this line of thinking Tuesday in Twitter's Vine App Might Grow Larger Than Instagram, Flickr.

Vine is an excellent app, but it's hanging in the ether right now. Bring it into the Twitter fold. Package it with the new photo filtering system Twitter introduced at the same time as Facebook/Instagram made their defensive move.

Add a "launch" button or something in the top righthand of the Twitter mobile and Web platforms. When you open that tab, you receive a (personalized) list of daily habits to choose from that you can launch from Twitter, in Twitter and without leaving Twitter.

That's the future.

We go for our smartphones probably hundreds times a day to do literally thousands of things. If Twitter can create a world where more taps go its way and users stay within its ecosystem longer, it will have won. Just like Apple.

-- Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.
Rocco Pendola is TheStreet's Director of Social Media. Pendola's daily contributions to TheStreet frequently appear on CNBC and at various top online properties, such as Forbes.