Twitter’s expansion to 280 characters is rolling out publicly today to all users in supported languages, including English. The company had first announced the controversial plan to move beyond its traditional 140 characters back in September, noting at the time how a longer character count allowed users to express more of their thoughts without running out of room to tweet.
The expansion was initially available to a select group of Twitter users as a trial.
At the time of its original announcement, the company cited data backing up its decision that referenced how the character constraints impacted users differently, depending on their language.
Twitter said that those who tweeted in languages like Japanese, Korean and Chinese were able to express around double the amount of information in a single character, compared with users who spoke English, Spanish, Portuguese or French, for example.
In a blog post, Twitter said the expanded character limit would allow for easier expression while retaining the brevity for which the service is known. With the previous limit in place, 9 percent of tweets hit 140 characters. But during the test of expanded tweets, only 1 percent of tweets hit 280 characters.