Apps In Need of an iOS 7 Update

iOS 7 was announced at WWDC about 8 months ago. Developers to their hands on it shortly after. And yet there are still some applications that haven’t received updates to take advantages of it’s features. Here are some apps badly in need of some TLC.

Due.app

Due.app is a reminders application. It’s signature feature is “auto snooze” which basically means that a reminder will keep popping up on it’s own until it’s addressed in some way, either deferred to later or marked as complete. This provides an advantage over most other apps’ reminders in that Due.app will keep nagging until the user intervenes and it means that ill-timed reminder popups, or devices that are not nearby won’t fail to accomplish their goal of reminding. I personally only use Due.app for things that I absolutely have to do by a certain time, and need the “bug me until I do it” mentality.

Due.app is multi-platform (both iOS and OS X), and includes the ability to sync across them. Unfortunately, at present time, only the OS X version can update itself in the background. The iOS versions must be opened to sync their data. This means that data created or modified isn’t updated on iOS unless the user remembers to open the app. This is frustrating. So frustrating that it basically removes the usefulness of being able to sync. This kind of on-demand syncing is fine for something like 1Password, where the data is only used when the app is opened, but the ability for this app to successfully send reminders is the whole point.

The developer has been telling people on Twitter that version 2.0 is coming, but refuses to give any sort of timeline. This problem could have been solved long ago with push notifications that just said “You have new/updated reminders. Open Due to sync.”, but for some reason that never happened. Until this is resolved, the multi-device support is as much of a hinderance as anything.

Tweetbot for iPad

Tweetbot is one of the most popular Twitter clients out there, particularly on the iPhone where it has to be one of the most popular clients. After the announcement of iOS 7, Tapbots went to work and managed to put out a completely re-written version of Tweetbot for the iPhone in October (just four months after the iOS 7 announcement). There was no new version for the iPad or OS X, but conventional wisdom served to indicate the iPad version was expected at some point. It’s been nearly 4 months since the iPhone version was released and the iPad version is still MIA.

Tapbots has always prided themselves on not just making their iPad apps scaled up versions of iPhone apps, which most users appreciate. Presumably though, much of the had part of developing Tweetbot for iOS 7 was done as part of the iPhone version. This obviously is not the case though.

Like Due.app, the biggest missing is background syncing, which has proven to be invaluable for speeding up tweet consumption. The rest of the app looks great too, and the fresh coat of paint on the iPad version will be very nice. It would be shocking not to see the iPad version by April 1st, but stranger things have happened.

1Password

1Password is another one of those apps, like Due.app, where it seems impossible to fathom life without it. The newest version for OS X was a leaps and bounds improvement, and the 1Password mini feature has made using it regularly so much more convenient. Version 4 for iOS was released universally at the end of 2012, and was presumably a complete re-write (or close to it) of the previous iOS version. This was unfortunate timing for AgileBits, who probably were not interested in re-writing the app 6 months later.

Most of the issues with 1Password aren’t due to a lack of iOS 7 dependent features missing, and more to do with just general bugs and weird design decisions. First and foremost, it remains wildly unclear why the search box is not always available. Instead it resides on the top of the list being browsed on the left. This means that in order to do a new search the list must be scrolled1 in order to perform a new search. On OS X, the app rarely needs to be opened2, but on iOS the only way to get a password out is to open the app. Finding a password should require far fewer steps.

Also tied to search is the annoying problem (on all platforms) of generated passwords being included in search results. This often results in duplicate/incorrect results. It’s rare that someone will be searching for that generated password entry as opposed to the login itself. It would make far more sense to hide generated passwords from search results by default, or only have them show up when specifically searching that section.

The UI itself doesn’t need a major change. The keyboard could be updated to the iOS 7 version, and it wouldn’t hurt to make the UI fit better, but those are far from the biggest issues.

  1. Or moved with the universal iOS shortcut of clicking the status bar []
  2. Especially now with the 1Password mini being available in the menubar all the time []