New Update is Coming!

While I’ve been busy working for the employer’s projects, I could manage to find time from here and there to fix PopToo iOS App’s performance issues.

Most of the issues were about restoring the app state to be active from being in background. Some are related to saving too much data into Core Data storage, and some are related to doing too many tasks, too many times.

Fortunately, removing unnecessary lines of codes solved most of the issues. I had put these for preventing unexpected problems, but it seems like they can be minimized or replaced by much compact and efficient methods.

New update is coming, waiting for App Store Review to be finished. Also, new ideas for upgrading essential feature is being solidified, to be implemented in the future. I just wish I can have more time to focus on these good ideas.

Again and again, I thank all the highly active PopToo Friends. You are what make PopToo so alive!

Keep listening your favorite music with PopToo!

PopToo is updated to Version 1.2.2!

PopToo added and upgraded following issues:

  • FINALLY! ADDED: Foursquare Connection
    – You can use both Twitter & Foursquare names.
    – As you SHARE, you can also check-in to Foursquare Places.
    – You can save Foursquare Places into My Area list.
  • UPGRADED: Manual Check-ins to show more information in Timeline.
  • UPGRADED: My History to show check-in progress.
  • ADDED: Hide My Location option to have stronger privacy
  • FIXED: a few bugs

This update meant a lot to me. Because of my responsibilities at the company, I couldn’t spend much time to accelerate updating. When Version 1.2.2 is prepared finally , I was so excited, and even more when App Store approved new PopToo in 30 minutes after reviewing started.

Foursquare connection is added. Now you can use your Foursquare username as your identity, and check-in to Foursquare places with formatted text sharing what music you are listening, just like how you have done with your Twitter connection.

In Timeline, Manual Check-ins of PopToo Friends will be treated differently making it more distinguishable and informative.

For stronger privacy, you can even hide your location. Only an empty map (world map without coordinate) will be shown to others.

Thank you PopToo Friends for actively sharing their favorite songs! It makes me happy everyday to see Timeline being constantly updating.

Keep listening your favorite music with PopToo!

What’s being prepared for the next version of PopToo

It’s already been a week working for my new company. The company is experienced in developing apps with custom UI, so I think I will learn a lot about designing visually attractive apps. However, for now, I got to help the project, which I haven’t been involved in from the beginning, to be finished on time. It’s daunting to follow up what has been going on and yet I should bring significant contribution to this project to be done successfully.

Anyway, it’s been a very busy week and I must prepare to have another busy week, preventing me to make significant progress on finishing the newest version of PopToo. Without being sure when it will be done, I would just like to share what’s being prepared for the next version.

Version 1.2.x will include Foursquare connection, so you can check-in to the selected place with the formatted text showing the song title and artist name. I am still looking for a way to use Auto Check-in for Foursquare connection. This feature has been promised for long time and I just don’t want to delay anymore. Also, Manual Check-ins will be more distinguishable in Timeline, allowing our PopToo Friends to know what songs are TRULY BELOVED ONES of our PopToo Friends.

I just hope to make some time to focus on fixing unusual bugs additionally and finally share the newest PopToo to our Friends!

Keep enjoying your favorite music with PopToo!

Changes in the developer’s priorities

As many of our PopToo Friends have been noticed, PopToo is actually one man project of fXceed. Though it has been quite challenging, developing a product with all the responsibilities and rights has been exciting and beneficial, especially in finding a new employment recently.

I will be working for a South Korean company, developing iOS apps. It will be better for me to grow as an iOS developer and earn some money to afford means to support myself and my activities, including PopToo. It does not mean I will abandon PopToo project altogether, but simply assign lower priorities due to the importance of taking responsibilities at new company.

The reason for accepting this offer is very simple: To financially support myself, and save money for later activities, especially for PopToo.

Also, I needed to take some time to observe and examine how other apps similar to PopToo are doing. For my resources are limited, it’s important to find the critical niche these apps are not solving for their users, and enhance PopToo to focus on providing the right solutions to these. Perpetual enhancement should be the key feature of PopToo.

Most of all, I would like to keep PopToo as free as it should be, as long as possible. I had thought about using mobile advertisements to support PopToo, but I am still not convinced if it’s the right way. And I think PopToo’s not yet up to the standard to charge new Friends even for the cheapest price. Without needing to worry about making money from PopToo since I am employed, I can support our Friends to keep using PopToo for free. In other words, I let myself to be employed to continue working for PopToo somehow.

So, it will become not so easy to update PopToo iOS App and its service as often as it could have been. However, I will do my best to find enough to time for PopToo and continue supporting my PopToo Friends. You can follow my Twitter account: @petershine and PopToo’s @poptoonet to know how I am doing and ask questions. Even if updates may not be distributed often, you can check out what I am working on and planning for PopToo.

Thank you and keep enjoying your favorite music with PopToo!

PopToo’s current server status and plan for next update

PopToo server was down for about 22 hours. We are sorry for all our PopToo Friends, who have been trusting our service, whom should never have to worry if it’s working properly. Thank you for your patience, and letting us to know that you care PopToo so much.

We have been busy finishing new update for PopToo. And we were TOO busy to know PopToo server was not working for almost a day.

Currently, we are updating our server to utilize more data for better PopToo experience. Our database attributes are changing to contain Foursquare related information to accommodate more Friends, and to support and prepare for new feature.

For the purpose of supporting different cases such as one PopToo Friend is using both Twitter and Foursquare accounts, we are taking enough to time to minimize any confusion or potential bugs. It’s not so easy to prepare to prevent situations that haven’t happened yet.

Also, we are preparing new and modified feature for My History. Utilizing iOS’ multitasking feature, we will emphasize PopToo’s another great usefulness for keeping records of PopToo Friend’s listening history.

Keep listening your favorite music with PopToo! New update is coming soon!

Supporting our PopToo Friends in Japan

If you have noticed, so many PopToo check-ins have been made by our Japanese friends, especially by @abesac and @yukino1230music, since the beginning of PopToo project.

We always appreciated their contribution for making PopToo Timeline to be as highly active as it could be, at the beginning of the project which were not supported by massive strategic marketing.

When the crisis happened in Japan, we were so worried about our PopToo Friends and every people in Japan. It’s always difficult, even without crisis as big as this one, to be forced to have daily activities limited, not being able to enjoy everyday normal stuff.

However fortunately, one of PopToo Friends in Tokyo, Japan started checking-in his favorite songs about two days ago. It’s Auto Check-in enabled ones, indirectly telling us that he is OK and listening to his songs, resting or doing something for himself and others.

We felt something. It made us to appreciate simple things like listening to music even more. How comforting is it to see there can be some moment to be granted for enjoying favorite music! Whatever our Japanese friends listened, we hope it could cheer him up, strengthened him to enjoy his life even in the midst of difficulties.

As a way of supporting our Friends in Japan, I would like to propose our PopToo Friends to try using YouTube button in Detail view to try listening Japanese songs, checked-in by @abesac@yukino1230music, and other Japanese friends. One of PopToo’s mission is to satiate one’s curiosity for what music is being played in different countries like Japan. You’ll enjoy experiencing music shared by actual listeners themselves at the moment, at the place.

Keep listening your favorite music with PopToo!

PopToo fixed problems and updated to Version 1.1.6

PopToo fixed following issues:

  • FIXED crash caused by delayed launching for updating database
  • FIXED profile images in Timeline not being loaded

The critical problem occurred at launch of new version, and caused crashing the app. The main reason for situation was that app was taking too much time to launch, which triggered iOS’ own mechanism to shut down if an app was not loading within certain limit of time.

It wasn’t easy to re-create the situation in our testing device. Every time we launch updated PopToo, it always succeeded, making us wonder if there really is a problem. We could not have noticed until one of PopToo Friend experienced this shutting down at launch and kindly reported to us. Without this report, we wouldn’t take enough time to examine launch process of PopToo more carefully.

What we found as the main reason for delayed launch was that PopToo was fetching saved data too early. Since PopToo had initiated this at launch, before finishing loading the app, the chance it could trigger iOS to shut down the app was too high. Usually, it doesn’t take too long, but it will if the scheme of the database was being updated.

We changed PopToo to fetch saved data as late as possible, after loading the app is finished. After a few tests, we are confident this modification can fix crashing at launch of PopToo iOS app.

The other problem of not loading PopToo Friends’ Twitter user information and profile images were explained in last blog: http://poptoo.tumblr.com/post/3806319390/our-explanation-about-the-error-in-version-1-1-5

Again, we thank our PopToo Friends, who were patient enough to wait for this fix, and supported us with bug reports like above mentioned. Keep listening your favorite music with PopToo!