Glass Bottle Apps and iOS 8, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus Updates

The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus have recently been released, along with the most recent version of iOS, iOS 8. In response to these new platforms from Apple, Glass Bottle Apps, like other app developers, is hard at work updating our apps to take advantage of their new capabilities. I admit, we are a bit behind others, who have had updates ready at launch, however we have our reasons for our separate update schedule. Until those updates are ready, our apps will simply scale up for the new screen,  and will run the updates we have already released.

Whack a Mayor running on the iPhone 6 Plus before the 2.0.2 update.

Whack a Mayor running on the iPhone 6 Plus before the 2.0.2 update

iOS Simulator Screen Shot Sep 17, 2014, 9.11.19 PM

Updating Whack a Mayor for the iPhone 6 Plus required a more spread out layout

Our Reasoning, and Why You Didn’t Really Miss Out

There are a few reasons that we didn’t have a raft of updates ready to go last Thursday. First of all, we had a major round of updates a month ago as part of our GB2.0 initiative. It was a calculated decision on our part to have our biggest updates our before the iOS and iPhone 6 launch. Most of the new features we came up with didn’t require a larger screen or new operating system. The benefits of GB2.0 will be available to anyone running iOS 7 as well.

This was also a decision based on managing risks. In the past, updates to Apple’s development software has caused issues often causing app store rejections and requiring large, last-minute changes. By releasing our major updates before upgrading our development software, we could be sure our app updates worked as intended, which we pulled off successfully while avoiding the rush of developers making last-minute updates which would have delayed our review time. Our last update using XCode 5 was Pint or Pitcher 2.0, which was released last week.

We also felt that releasing apps right now would be mainly for the media’s benefit, as not everyone will be buying a new iPhone or updating their operating system as soon as they are available. And based on recent experience, we would likely not gotten any media attention anyway.

Now that the GB2.0 updates are in the hands of our users, and iOS 8 is released to the public, we can begin creating updates that take advantage on iOS 8’s new features and the larger screens of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. Here is some of what we have planned.

Whack a Mayor

This one is already finalized and waiting for review by Apple. Because of recent events, I have changed some of the characters in the game. As well, the game layout now adjusts bases on your screen size, making it easier to hit the candidates with your thumbs (see screenshots above).

Fundometer

Fundometer is a bit of a special case because of the database code I originally used. However I do plan to update the app to use notifications (this will also help make it take advantage of the Apple Watch and Android Wear), and create a Today View widget. These will be made more useful by adding a “recurring contributions” feature. (Stay tuned for screenshots, I will add them when I start working on this update). We will also take advantage of the new Share Extensions to allow you to share your thermometers more widely.

Dodgy Dingbat

Whether or not we end up making a sequel to this game, or change some game modes on the current game, I will be updating Dodgy Dingbat to take advantage of the better scaling and layout adjustments available with our new developer tools.

Unit Pricer, Glass or Bottle, and Pint or Pitcher

Unit Pricer already has basic sharing built in to allow users to share the prices they find, and we are looking at bringing this feature to Glass or Bottle and Pint or Pitcher. This price sharing feature will be updated to take advantage of the new Sharing Extension in iOS 8.

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