Warmshowers iPhone app now available!
The Warmshowers iPhone app is now available for download! You can download the app by visiting the App Store and searching for "warmshowers", or by clicking this link: http://itunes.apple.com/app/warmshowers/id359056872?mt=8
The app lets you visualize on a map the location of available hosts in your vicinity, mark them as favourites (for easy retrieval later), and get in contact with them.
The app is 100% free. Enjoy!
Congratulations on the fine work. Hoping this will help those who use an iphone in their travels this year.
Why would this REQUIRE 3.1.3? The only upgrade from 3.1.2 is locking out a method of jailbraking. It also reduces battery life in nearly every version of the iPhone.
I refuse to upgrade to 3.1.3 due to the battery life issue - Would love to give this a whirl myself!
Whew! As in it is totally free? I hope this won’t be quite a few of the biggest financial mistakes that you will do. I mean, we’re on recessions hard hit and opening your eyes to reality, nothing is free nowadays. People are not that fool enough to believe what they can’t see.
Thanks for all the comments. I just submitted v1.1 to the app store, which should run on iPhone OS v3.1.2. It may take a few days before it gets approved by Apple.
ColeP: I'm not sure what you're trying to say. What can't you see? The app is free to download and use.
nice app. Thanks a lot.
I'd like to have a menu item to view the user page; currently you have to go via "contact user" and then click on the name of the user.
It would also be nice if a widget with the user information would be available - in contrast to opening a web browser for that.
Wow what a fantastic app - I'm about to embark on a tour from Scotland to Australia (having never gone bicycle touring before) and this will be incredibly useful. The only thing I would ask for is to have the Google maps distance scale turned on when browsing the map.
this is really nicely done and I have no doubt that on my trip in Belgium (starting next week) it will be invaluable!!!
One suggestion for a future upgrade - the opening map is always my home (Colorado, USA) and I have to make things smaller and then move to someplace else if I am looking for a place in Europe or elsewhere. Is there a way you could have the opening screen allow the user to search for cities/regions - like on the Warmshowers website. Or another option would be to have a setting that used either your home or your current location (actually it may already open on my current location but since I haven't left home I don't know for sure).
I think someone already mentioned that having it go straight to the profile of the host as opposed to the contact page them and then view their profile wuld be nice.
Again, this app is really well done! Thanks for your hard work on this!!!!
I'm heading out on tour in a few days, but plan to work on the next version of the app when I get back. I aim to get a new version out by mid to late summer. I won't be making an Android version, but that shouldn't stop anyone else from volunteering. :)
If you'd like to follow my tour, you can do so here: http://trackmytour.com/1918. Cheers!
Version 2.0 of the iPhone app for Warmshowers.org has been approved for the App Store! You can get it at http://bit.ly/g2cuEX.
Will the app work on my Ipod Touch? The Touch does have the ability to locate itself via network, but if the app allowed me to enter my current location via GPS coordinates from Google maps or my zip code, then when I had a WiFi connection I'd be able to use it.
Yes, it works with the Ipod Touch as well. You need a wifi connection for it to be useful. As you use the app it downloads the google map and the corresponding information from warmshowers.com. BTW, the Ipod Touch will find your current location most of the time if there are wifi access points nearby.
I marked a warm shower host as a favorites but where can I view/retrieve my favorites?
We need one like that for android users!
Looking at the iPhone app and wishing I could use it as it would come in very handy on tour, but alas no iPhone I have an iPad and no app, will you PLEASE consider making one for iPad ? Thanks
Rev. C Morgan
Park Rapids, Mn
I am happy to share the iPhone app source code with anyone who would like to develop an Android version.
Happy Holidays Chris,
I'm a somewhat new touring cyclist (2 years) and 12-year software engineering veteran (embedded, UNIX and w32 desktop) just getting into Android app development. If you'd be so kind as to share your iPhone WS app source code with me I'd be most grateful for the starting point in developing an Android WS app.
Thanks & Best Regards,
The app is really useful when you are traveling outside of your home country. You "preload" maps when you have a wifi connection, you can also click on people names to preload their info, then when you arrive next to their place (one or two days before) you can contact them.
Some small improvements I suggest (if possible) :
- define how much map data you can store in the cache (sometimes when you don't have wifi available it's nice to keep lots of maps preloaded to easily find warmshowers later)
- make a setting to automatically preload people's data without having to click on their names
- allow the "pins/names" to last for a very long time (more than just a few days) without the need of an internet connection. At the present time if you preload people's information 2 weeks before beeing in the city where they live, when you arrive in the city the pins have disappeared or the information on the people are not available anymore
- and the most important feature for me : allow to contact someone within the application without switching on the WS website. It's important because when you are in a foreign country and want to contact someone using cell network (3G/...) it's very very expensive and if you make a standard form in the app with subject and message content it will only need a few kilobytes of data to send them, but at the present time you need to log in on the regular website (pictures), then it redirects you on your profile page (more pictures) the you can display the contact form, and when it's submitted it displays the person's profile (picture and worse : the google maps of its location). So please help us to pay less to contact someone.
Thanks for your feedback on the Warmshowers app. To be honest, I don't use the app very often since I typically camp when I bike tour. Having constructive feedback from an active user is invaluable. Thanks!
Some of the issues you point out are limitations and workarounds due to the available tools in the iPhone API. Let me go through each:
>> define how much map data you can store in the cache (sometimes when you don't have wifi available it's nice to keep lots of maps preloaded to easily find warmshowers later)
Unfortunately, Apple provides no control over the map cache. I could consider adding a third party mapping API which supports offline maps (https://github.com/route-me/route-me sounds like a candidate), but I want to be sure there is enough demand before diving into that.
>> make a setting to automatically preload people's data without having to click on their names
This could probably be done, but I'll have to talk to Randy from the warmshowers website about making this work.
>> allow the "pins/names" to last for a very long time (more than just a few days) without the need of an internet connection. At the present time if you preload people's information 2 weeks before beeing in the city where they live, when you arrive in the city the pins have disappeared or the information on the people are not available anymore
This was a decision I struggled with, but there's a motivation for the behaviour. At the moment the offline cache for a user will last 7 days before it requires a refresh from the server. It was an attempt to work around the following situation:
- you cache a host on day 1
- on day 2 the host changes their status to "unavailable"
- on day 40 you contact them due to stale data in the app
By requiring a refresh every 7 days we prevent hosts from being contacted long after they've become "unavailable".
A solution might be to persist the data, but present a warning to the user if they are viewing data that has become stale (e.g., > 7 days). I'll consider that.
>> and the most important feature for me : allow to contact someone within the application without switching on the WS website.
I appreciate this. My other bike touring app TrackMyTour is heavily centered around offline use to minimize roaming costs. There are some technical limitations at the moment, but I can talk to Randy and see if we can find a solution.
Again, many thanks for your feedback and keep them coming!
Ok, that's what I was thinking about the Apple API limitations.
For the data cache about profiles, something useful can be that the app tries to refresh the profile when a wifi connection is available but doesn't limit the ability to see the a profile older than 7 days if there are no connection. As you said maybe a warning could be interresting if the profile is older than 7 days.
I'm getting close to finishing version 3.0 of the Warmshowers iPhone app. This version will see significant improvements over v2.1. The main points are:
- Better offline support. I won't go into specifics, but host details are persisted in such a way that allows you to be offline for a longer period of time without requiring a refresh from the server.
- Colour coded pins - A green pin means the host is cached and marked as "favourite", a purple pin means the host details are cached in the device, and a red pin means the host is not cached. In other words, you can access the details of a green or purple pin while offline.
- Hosts can be viewed as a list. The List view will display the nearest 50 hosts, while the Favourites view will list all favourites. These are sorted by distance.
- Search - Lists can be searched (search only applies to hosts cached in your device).
- The host info view now contains the preferred notice, last login (to get a sense of how active the host is), and distance fields.
Below are some screenshots to give you an idea of where this is going.
If anyone would like to help with testing, then please visit http://trackmytour.com/beta/ to learn how to send me your device details.