Since it’s launch the popular photo sharing service Instagram has only been available for Apple iOS based devices and now the company has announced plans to launch a Google Android version of the program, a smart decision given Google’s nearly 50% smartphone market share.
With the launch of the new application Instagram believes they can double their current user database which includes more than 50 million active users.
Speaking at LeWeb in Paris Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom revealed:
“We have two people working on Android now,” and “I’m excited to be able to see our numbers today nearly double.”
At this time there is no timeline for the launch of the new Android app and Systrom wasn’t exactly forthcoming with details for the new program. read more
After little more than 2 weeks of wait, the Apple App Store crew has finally approved the Google+ app for iOS.
Sadly for many users it does seem that the app only runs on the iPhone, and not on iPod touches (even not latest generation). So far no iPad specific app has been released either and the app does not run on iPads. Rumors around the internet confirm that the Google+ app for iPhone only runs on iPhone 3, iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4.
Where very often the iOS apps the more polished ones are, Foursquare being the best example, the Google+ app for iPhone does not belong in that category and it seems that the app was developed by developers without any eye to particular design. While both apps are very similar, the Android Google+ app is the clear winner when it comes to polish, design and interface. The iPhone app just doesn’t feel as finished.
At least WordPress fans will love the design of user profiles in Google+ for iPhone. read more
Users loathing Twitter’s QuickBar (which occasionally featured Promoted Trends) will be glad to hear that Twitter will be removing the feature via an upcoming iOS update today.
While iPhone and iPad users will no longer be bothered by the feature, apparently Twitter had future plans for Quickbar that they never had the chance to test out.
The QuickBar was originally conceived to help users discover what’s happening in the broader world beyond people they already follow. The bar was also seen as a potential means of in-app notifications for new @mentions, DMs, and other important activity. [...]
Rather than continue to make changes to the QuickBar as it exists, we removed the bar from the update appearing in the App Store today. (Official Twitter Blog)
Although I personally wasn’t bothered by the QuickBar (since the app is free), it’s good to see the company listening and responding to the demands of users.
While the QuickBar was useful for trend spotting, most users probably want to focus on what is happening in their tweet stream than what’s the hot topic of the day.
If Twitter ever decides to resurrect the QuickBar in the future, they may want to make it optional (or at least opt out), that way users can turn off the feature if it begins to irritate them.
Did you like the QuickBar? Or are you glad Twitter is removing it from their official iOS app?
It looks like those of us using the WordPress for iOS app will soon be able to respond back to comments without having to install CommentPush.
Push notifications are coming along nicely! [...]
We’re also considering push notifications for Likes as well. What do you guys think? What else would you want to have notifications for? (via Chris Boyd on Making WordPress for iOS)
According to Chris Boyd users would be able to visit the exact comment posted upon your blog from within your app which is similar to how Twitter for iOS sends users to the exact Tweet reply instead of merely opening the app.
This will make it not only much easier to reply back to comments in a timely fashion, but also help weed out human spam much faster.
As far as push notifications for likes goes, hopefully WordPress has a setting where users can turn this specific feature off as some blogs may receive hundreds of likes in a post (note: push notifications for likes is only available for WP.com sites).
This future update should also help WordPress stay competative against rivals, especially Squarespace (the latter which has boasted push notifications for several months now).
Note: Yes I know the WordPress app icon is upside down, but that was apparently done so the team could distinguish between the test app and the one approved by Steve Jobs app tribunal.
It looks like PadPressed will be facing some competition as one of their rivals is not only embracing the iPad, but offering WordPress bloggers a less expensive price.
WPtouch ProTM has gained worldwide attention providing unique, rich and beautiful mobile experiences for website visitors on touch-based smart phones.
With WPtouch Pro 2.1, that great experience has been redefined and brought to the iPadTM, with a user-interface tailored for the iPad experience. [...]
Since WPtouch Pro on iPad is a part of WPtouch Pro 2.1 (starting at only $39), you get incredible value, great features, product support & future upgrades— all at an extremely competitive, affordable price. (Official BraveNewCode Blog) read more
For those of you hoping that Weebly (a blog/website service similar to Squarespace) would be releasing an iPhone app soon, you’ll be dissappointed that the company has no immediate plans to embrace iOS as recently revealed by a tweet.
@weebly Is it possible to post directly to Weebly web site from iphone? Is there an app like Blog press for Weebly (via @loisath)
@loisath Building a website is significantly more complicated than posting to a blog, so we don’t yet have a mobile app. Sorry for that!! (via @Weebly)
Although much smaller than rivals like WP.com, according to Compete.com Weebly is receiving far more traffic than Squarespace (at least as far as unique visitors go), and actually showed signs of strong growth in 2010.
While Weebly’s isn’t entirely shooting down the idea of developing an iPhone app in the future (which is a good thing), hopefully the company will consider building one before Steve Jobs launches the next iPhone this summer.
In a move that will bring them up to par with their WP.com rival, Blogger (aka blog*spot) is beta testing mobile layouts which should help the platform appeal more to those sporting a smartphone.
[W]e are excited to announce our first launch of mobile templates! Initially available as opt-in functionality on Blogger in Draft, mobile templates will re-format your blogs for smartphones to enhance your readers’ viewing experience. In order to activate mobile templates, simply go to Dashboard > Settings > Email & Mobile tab, enable the mobile template option and then save settings. [...]
We are initially supporting 6 variants of the Simple template and 6 variants of the Awesome template. If you have used one of these 12 templates through our Template Designer, your mobile view will be rendered in the same style as your desktop view (other template variants will be rendered as Simple). (Blogger In Draft Blog) read more
After many months of waiting it looks like Twitter for iPhone will finally have a feature iOS users have been begging for without having to rely upon a third party service.
When you’re out and about, your phone probably isn’t always in front of you. It might be in your pocket or purse or on a table – perhaps with the screen off. We want to make sure you see important Tweets even when you’re not looking at Twitter at the moment. To help with that, today we’re launching push notifications for @mentions.
Whenever an account that you follow mentions you, you’ll immediately receive a notification. You’ll know who is talking to or about you on Twitter, and you’ll be able to continue the conversation in real-time. Notifications for @mentions will initially be available on SMS and on the latest version of Twitter for iPhone, which you can download today from the App Store. (Official Twitter Blog)
This feature will work for both direct messages as well standard mentions, although there is no word on whether Twitter will also send push notifications for retweets as well.
Previously users had to use a service like Boxcar in order to receive notifications, or tweet from a third party app like Echofon or Simply Tweet instead.
Twitter is promising to bring SMS as well as push notifications for fans using Android or Windows Phone 7 as well.
As far as Blackberry users go, they will have to reach out to RIM for support (if they do not have this feature already) as Twitter does not officially support Blackberry devices (despite the “officialness” of the name).
With social networks like Twitter and Facebook dominating the iVerse, it looks like Ning has finally decided to launch an iPhone app in order to help its premium customers manage their social networks while on the go.
It’s now even easier for Network Creators to manage and monitor their Ning Networks on the go. We’re excited to announce that a Ning iPhone app for Network Creators is now available in the Apple iTunes Store.
This app makes it possible for Network Creators with iPhones, iPads or iPod Touches to access their Plus and Pro Ning Networks. [...]
The Ning iPhone app is part of our Ning Everywhere effort, which allows Network Creators to customize, integrate and make their social Web sites accessible on any device or service. While this new iPhone app is for Network Creators to manage their Ning Networks, thanks to the new Ning API, Ning Pro networks can bring a better mobile experience to their members. (Official Ning Blog) read more
After introducing the world to iExpression in July, Red When Excited (from the United Kingdom) has been tirelessly working on improving their unofficial ExpressionEngine app with the impending release of version 1.4 for iOS.
While iExpression’s latest version promises to match WordPress for iOS by allowing EE fans to upload videos to their blogs, the app goes one step further by including an additional feature lacking from official and unofficial video blogging apps (like BlogPress).
We are adding some cool file management features. Take a photo or record a movie and instantly upload. Upload files (archives, movies, pictures, WHATEVER) from e-mail attachments, web-pages, or other applications and very importantly your Dropbox account :-) You can also delete files you no longer need. Wicked. (Red When Excited Blog)
Red When Excited has also provided a video (as shown below) highlighting the upcoming features which should help give ExpressionEngine fans an edge over their WordPress rivals on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. read more