How to Tame Twitter's Annoying Mobile Notifications 2022


You might have noticed more Twitter notifications hitting your phone or tablet than usual. Instead of just getting notified when you're mentioned or retweeted — users are starting to see follower suggestions, ongoing conversations and news alerts.

These notification types are the extension of features Twitter first rolled out last fall. In recent weeks, however, more users are starting to see all kinds of alerts. Some of these are about breaking news. Others are about engagement level on a tweet. Others still are recommendations about who to follow. Twitter is also starting to notify users when several people they follow are talking about the same subject.

See also: The 14 Types of Twitter Users You'll Mute First

Sometimes, these notifications are great — especially in the context of breaking news. But other times, they're annoyances. I mean, it's great that"@grobertson and @AshleyCodianni are talking about tacos"— hey, I like tacos too — but did my phone need to send off an alert to let me know?

So what's the solution? You might think — just disable Twitter notifications on Android or iOS. But that means you can't get alerts you might want — like a direct message or updates from a specific user. Fortunately, it is possible to refine those alerts within Twitter's settings. Unfortunately, accessing those settings isn't as straightforward as you might hope.

That's where we come in.

Accessing Twitter's Notification Settings

The first step to taming Twitter's notifications is to access the controls in your mobile app.


To access your notification settings, tap on the"Me"icon. On the iPhone, this is on the bottom bar. On the iPad, it's on the bottom of the left sidebar. Then tap on the gear icon and select Settings.

This will pull up your Settings panel. Tap on the account you want to modify.

The settings screen for Twitter for iPhone

Image: Screenshot Twitter

This will open up the notifications area. This is what controls the notifications you want to turn off or on. Be sure to scroll all the way down to see the full list of choices.

The notifications preferences for Twitter for iPhone.

Image: Screenshot Twitter


On Android, tap the icon Menu icon in the upper-right hand corner (it looks like three vertical dots), hit Settings and select your account.

Accessing the Settings in Twitter for Android

Image: Screenshot Twitter

Tap on the Notifications area to pull up the various options. Again, be sure to scroll all the way down to see all the options.

Twitter's Android notifications screen lets you control what notifications you get and what notifications you don't.

Image: Screenshot Twitter

Controlling Notifications

OK, now that you see all of these notification options, what do they all mean?

Tweets — This will let you get an update every time a specific person tweets. You can control who this applies to. It's like Google Alerts for Twitter, but with the potential to be more annoying.

Mentions and Photo Tags — This will let you know anytime a person tags you in a photo or @mentions you in a tweet.

Retweets — This lets you know when one of your tweets gets retweeted.

Favorites — This lets you know when one of your tweets is favorited.

New Followers — This lets you know when you gain a new follower.

Messages — This lets you know when you get a direct message.

Significant Engagement — This will pop up an alert when a tweet you send has more engagement than usual. That can be link clicks, replies, favorites or retweets. Engagement is based on the average you get per tweet.

Twitter Alerts — These are"critical alerts"from trusted accounts you follow. Think breaking news tweets.

New contacts — This is an alert when someone who has your email or phone number in their contact list joins Twitter. For this to work, you need to let Twitter let people search for you by phone or email address.

Recommendations — This is a riff of the @MagicReqs account and offers recommendations of users to follow based on your interests and the users you follow.

News — These are tweets related to news events and news from Twitter.

Other — This is a more general category. This is where the"Sam and Dean are talking about Supernatural"tweets come from.

Customizing Notification Types

Some notifications, such as Retweets or Favorites, can be further customized. You can choose to receive notifications of every time you get a retweet or favorite — or just when it is"tailored for you"by Twitter.

Some Twitter notifications have further options.

Image: Screenshot Twitter

What constitutes"tailored for you"is sort of a black box — so if you want all notifications — choose"anyone."

Guide For Sane Notifications

The notification settings that have the potential to be the most annoying are Twitter Alerts, New Contacts, Recommendations, News and Other. Depending on your personal preferences, you might like or hate the"Significant engagement"notes. Play with the settings to see what works for you and what doesn't.

Because I have a lot of followers, I limit my notifications to Messages and Significant engagement alerts. This is what my settings panel looks like:

Twitter notifications settings for the engaged user who still wants to keep her phone in-check.

Image: Screenshot Twitter

Check Notification Defaults With New App Updates

By default, Twitter enables practically everything as far as notifications go. If you're re-installing an app (or installing Twitter on a new phone), you'll want to revisit the settings to make sure annoying alerts aren't enabled. Twitter also adds notifications from time to time, so it's a good idea to check the settings area with major Twitter updates to see what is what.

Settings don't carry over to other devices — so if you use an iPhone, iPad and Android device — you need to get your settings enabled in all places.

Let us know your ideal Twitter workflow in the comments.

UPDATE, May 30, 8:10 p.m. ET — Twitter rolled out a new notification at the end of April that alerts users when their tweet receives a significant number of retweets or favorites, or is embedded in a story. It's not clear how many retweets or favorites a tweet would need to merit the notification, but it does appear whenever a tweet is embedded as part of a story online.

"The significant engagement notification feature is currently available to verified users,"a spokesperson told .