Twitter may launch photo sharing this week

Twitter could be planning to launch its own photo upload and sharing service this week, according to multiple reports.

The company’s CEO, Dick Costolo, is expected to make the announcement at the D9 conference in California.

The service could be based on, acquired by Twitter last July. It would compete with the likes of Twitpic, Instagram and Yfrog, and could be monetized through advertising.

There’s a strong chance, though, that the move could offend third party developers – already less than happy about the way Twitter has encroached on their space.

Back in March, platform lead Ryan Sarver warned third party developers off creating Twitter clients. He told the company’s developer forum: “Developers ask us if they should build client apps that mimic or reproduce the mainstream Twitter consumer client experience. The answer is no.”

But with rival photo sharing services having been in existence long before that announcement, any competing launch from Twitter itself is likely to leave the likes of Twitpic somewhat aggrieved.

Twitter says the reason for the crackdown is that it wants to give users a more consistent experience. Last week, the company announced that it had bought leading third-party client Tweetdeck for a reported $40 million.