Banca recognized (by Apple) as one of the best app extensions

In the Apple’s October 2014 event, in the segment about iOS 8’s first month in the wild, Apple’s Senior VP of Software Engineering Craig Federighi showed an app-icon-wall of the best App Extensions. Among them, sitting pretty in green, was our own Banca currency converter. This is a big thing for one-man indie development shop like mine and makes me very proud.

“Looking handsome, am I? (you too Craig, you too)”

A week before, Banca was listed among Best new apps on the iPhone App Store in US and quite a few other countries.

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All in all, October was a good month. :)

It’s not stopping there – it’s worth noting that Banca is among the first apps to support landscape orientation on both iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. I sure hope you are finding a good use for it in your daily work.

Published on · apps, company

Improved widget in Banca 6.1

New version of Banca received high praise, both from customers and the media – thanks all! It means a lot to continue working on it. First update is already on its way to review, with few notable fixes and new features.

First – iCloud sync is fixed. Apple changed the way some underlying APIs in iOS 8 and I missed to notice this in time. The effect was that Banca thinks that iCloud is turned off thus does nothing – neither reads nor writes to it. This is hopefully corrected for good, in 6.1.

Second – the much praised pasteboard functionality in the widget will work even more reliably in 6.1 with better detections of the boundaries of the currency string. In previous version, widget would pickup what looks like a currency value inside a larger continuous stream of characters – say those weird YouTube URLs. Thus you would copy/paste such URL and when later opening the Notification Center suddenly see 7 Guatemala Quetzal (GTQ) appears out of nowhere in Banca widget. :) This will work better in 6.1.

Third – a new feature: double-tap the source value and you will see a short list of few typical numbers – 100, 200, 500 – plus last copied value. Plus Banca will now remember that you changed this, thus next time you open the widget that chosen value will stay unless you copied something new into the pasteboard, in the meantime. This is much harder to explain in words than to show in app :).

I have updated the preview video to showcase all that.

Keep the good feedback coming. :)

Published on · Banca, apps

Banca’s Today widget for iOS 8

As I write this, Banca v6 is “in review” at Apple. The app is fully updated for iOS 8 and supports new iPhones in the best way suitable for their expanded screens. On iPhone 6 and 6 Plus Banca now supports landscape with the keypad on the side.

“Landscape support for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus”

The true star of this release is the Today widget, which is best showcased using the video:

Read on →

Published on · Banca, apps

iOS 8 updates

iOS 8 is live and it’s really, really awesome. I totally recommend it to anyone using iOS 7 at the moment. There are so much new stuff to play with, that the possible level of quality apps is now very, very high. Much respect to all at Apple who made this possible over last several years.

Live version of Couch to 5k app is still an over-a-year-old v3. The UI and features you see on the minisite here is what’s already ready in v4. However, this update is not live, for two reasons:

  • minor issues that triggered app review rejection
  • need to wait until Apple resolves HealthKit issues on their end

ETA, at best: mid October.

Banca and Unitica were both recently updated, but I’m not stopping there. There are awesome things in works, with multiple extension points for both apps. So far, I have not seen that any of the competing apps have implemented an extension like the one I’m working on. Can’t wait to publish this.

Banca is first in line, followed by Unitica. ETA: early October for Banca, early November for Unitica.

And there’s a suprise that should already be on the Store – Convertica bundle that includes both apps for about 30% OFF the regular price. If you already have one of the apps, you can complete the bundle for a fraction of the price.

Note: all upcoming updates will be iOS 8 only – thus don’t hesitate to update your devices to iOS 8.

Published on · apps

Design process for Units 2

I wrote a very extensive article about the design process for Units convert 2. I went back through the source code and recorded lots of movies (25 or so) of the app in various stages of development. I explain the issues, options I considered and the reason why I chose the final result.

Read it here: Design process of Units convert 2

I always learn a lot from articles like this and I hope this will be useful to many of you as well.

Published on · Banca, apps