Mobile

Tumblr rolls out in-app themes, finally becomes a mobile company

tumblr
Image Credit: Bloomberg

Today, Yahoo-owned Tumblr is rolling out the ability to customize your blog’s design across any device — including its native iOS and Android apps.

When Tumblr first arrived on mobile devices, all of its uniquely-designed blogs were stripped of their themes in favor of a single, app-wide design. While the default app theme certainly looked nice, Tumblr creative director Peter Vidani calls it “bare.” This release brings some of Tumblr’s diverse theming capabilities directly into the app.

Vidani says the company realized it was “missing a big piece of what we like about Tumblr: We could have a website and have a unique home for us on Web. This is just a continuation of something we believed in from the start.” Tumblr calls these in-app customization features your “mobile identity.”

Back in 2012 Tumblr was busy playing catch up after failing to hop on the mobile trend. Since then, the company has made great strides, and now, according to Vidani, the app is no longer just an extension of the website.

It’s not just our mobile app anymore. It is Tumblr. Just like how our website is Tumblr. It’s not an extension.

Vidani, a five-year Tumblr veteran, tells VentureBeat that this release “is probably one of the biggest things we’ve ever launched. … We’re customizing the way you look in the apps, and we’re using that to customize the web and the dashboard.” Vidani insists, however, that Web themes aren’t going anywhere:

There’s always going to be Web themes, and those will still exist. The two will complement each other.

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