On January 24, 2011 (10 days ago) we released VelaClock 2.0 with a dramatically new user interface (UI). Immediately after the update, a number of users emailed us saying that they preferred the old user interface. The app rating dropped to 2 out of 5 stars (with 5 reviews) from about 4.5 stars. Some users were upset. We also received a number of emails from users who liked the new interface. Given the small number of reviews and emails we received, it was difficult gauge if more users liked the new interface or the original interface. It was clear that some users strongly preferred the original interface.
How can we keep everyone happy? The App Store doesn’t support an optional upgrade. The only feasible solution is to have two apps. We’ve renamed the original VelaClock to “VelaClock Classic” (VelaClock1 in the App Store) and introduced a new VelaClock app. [Please note that we started writing this blog post on the same day that we submitted both apps to the App Store.]
VelaClock Classic v2.1 (free update for existing users, original UI, named “VelaClock1″ in the App Store): What’s new:
– Added an enhanced photographic image of the moon accurately depicting the moon’s phase and tilt.
VelaClock v1.0 (new app, new UI): introductory pricing of $0.99 USD for the first three days, then the price will be moved towards the normal price over the next couple of weeks. iOS 4 is required (for importing custom locations). Changes to new app (if you previously used it):
– Added ‘change in minutes of daylight from the previous day’ after daylight duration in the Sun/Moon detail panel.
– Fixed serious memory bug that caused a crash.
VelaClock v1.0 in App Store
Note: If you purchased VelaClock 2.0 with the new interface, and understandably do not wish to re-purchase the app, please contact us. Fortunately, VelaClock 2.0 with the new UI was only on the market for less than two weeks.
The original VelaClock app first appeared in the App Store on July 11, 2008, the day that the App Store opened. On that day only 500 apps were in the App Store and we were honored to be there! This version of VelaClock, now named VelaClock Classic, divided the screen into two panes, the upper pane which contains a list of cities and a lower detail pane, with three horizontally scrolling panels. The simplicity of a single screen interface is appealing, but VelaClock only displays a very limited amount for information. To provide more information, VelaClock needs a different format.
The new VelaClock app delivers much more information (data and graphics) with a new user interface. To create this highly usable and functional interface, we had many, many design iterations, and we think that you will like the results. The initial screen contains the list of cities and corresponding local times. Tapping on a row in the city list will transition to one of the four new full screen detail views. These new full screen detail views allow much more information to be displayed. A full description is on the new VelaClock web page.
Importing Custom Locations
To import Custom Locations from VelaClock Classic (VelaClock1) to the new VelaClock app, both apps must be on your device. To perform an import, navigate to the Custom Locations list in the new app and tap on the “Import from VelaClock1″ button. Having this feature was critical to being able to release a new VelaClock app. This feature required iOS 4.0 or newer.
Update on February 18, 2011
Further explanation is in a blog comment and response below.