Orange teams with Twitter on MMS tweets

Twitter on Orange handset

Orange users will now be able to share photos with their Twitter followers via MMS, as well as send and receive Tweets via text.

The mobile giant is claiming the "first ever" tag for the photo messaging bit, but Twitter previously offered free text message updates before the sheer volume of the site made it impossible to continue. Vodafone and O2 currently offer the service, however.

With the Orange deal, receiving Twitter alerts will be free, while text messages to upload to the site will be charged as usual. Photos uploaded via MMS will be hosted on Orange's Snapshot site.

As part of the deal, Twitter updates will also find their way to Orange World, which aggregates a user's social networking activity into one giant time suck, but with a single login.

On the Twitter blog, mobile products head Kevin Thau wrote: "The UK has had an outsized cultural impact on the world. From music to sports to literature... and now MMS with Twitter."

He said that the "special enhancement" was easy to use just take a picture on your Orange handset and send the MMS to 86444, and enter your username and password.

That short code also works for sending text message updates to Twitter on Orange, O2 or Vodafone.

"Twitter does not charge for this service," he noted. "It's just like sending and receiving messages with your friends your carrier's standard messaging rates apply."

Mark Watts Jones, head of product management for Orange UK, said his firm was happy to be jumping on the Twitter bandwagon.

"We've seen over the last year how Twitter is transforming the dynamics of real-time search and breaking news," he said in a statement. "So we're delighted to extend the value of the service by bringing it to mobile, enabling our customers to view and update their Twitter streams and giving them the unique ability to upload photos directly via MMS."

Click here for our guide to using Twitter for business.