Rate limits of an app in android using oauth



I am new to development and recently found out about the rate limiting feature of GET statuses/user_timeline api.

Now,I have an android app in which I will be using an app only OAuth to fetch the time line of an account. Now according the rate limit, only 300 requests can be made per 15 minute window. So which of the following is correct:

  1. Only 300 instances of the downloaded app can make a request in a defined 15 minute window period.
  2. Each instance of the downloaded app can make at most 300 requests in 15 minute window period.

Can some body please answer the above question?

Thanks in advance.



@andypiper @episod @ePirat … sorry guys for tagging you…but thought u can probably help me out on this as u have helped other users… it will be helpful if you can answer my question…


For app only auth, the first statement is true:

Only 300 instances of the downloaded app can make a request in a defined 15 minute window period.

There is no way and not done any distinguishing of App instances. App Auth rate limits are on a per-app base, not app-instance based.


@ePirat first of all thanks a ton for replying to the question

although the answer has rendered the logic used, to fetch the tweets from the timeline, to useless.

Now i will have to think of something else.

Is there any way to make the 2nd statement true without having any body log in with their twitter accounts?


Are you using Fabric or are you hitting the API “raw”?

You could use guest Auth on Fabric as an alternative to app-only auth.

What is your specific use case and why do you need to request a home timeline that often without being logged in?


Hi Andy, thanks for taking out time to reply. I am hitting the API “raw” and not using Fabric.

The specific use case is that i am developing an app for a twitter account which gives out deals from e-commerce sites. Now whoever is following the account, will get the deals from twitter. Since there are lot of people in India who don’t have a twitter account, I am trying to make an android app for them. Right now we don’t have an infrastructure to set up a dedicated server to enable push notifications using GCM. So we rare relying on pull notifications with the sync period configurable by the user from 15 minutes to 1 hr.

Will the guest Auth on Fabric solve the problem? I can try using that.


@andypiper i tried the fabric plugin for android. It was definitely easier to fetch the tweets. But after a few times it fetched the tweet it started giving 403 Forbidden error at the usertimeline request. I was always fetching just one latest tweet. And the requests to fetch the tweet were far apart in time.


Also i logged out every time after the tweet was fetched.


Never mind… I guess i found out the problem… Passing the guest session while getting the api client solved it…haven’t faced the problem since morning


@eyeingspy, good to hear you found a solution.

Just want to let you know we have a Fabric forum for mobile developers. By posting there you may get some exposure to other mobile developers that are trying to accomplish something similar. Most devs here are web app devs.


Duly noted. :smile: