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Inside Mobile Design and User Experience

Thoughts on mobile and social business applications, design, and user experience, by Chris Reckling.

On July 30 the Sametime mobile apps for iPhone and iPad were updated in the app store. Here's a list of the updates included in this release:
Improved chat history functionality

The new client includes a chat history browser that allows you to browse chat history by user and by date. Note: only browses chats that are stored on the device.
Manage settings from within the native application

Several settings that were previously outside the application and settable using the Settings app, are now part of the Sametime app itself and settable from within the Sametime app without exiting.
Performance and UI improvements

Chat bubble performance improvements as well as the way pictures are handled, which is more like the iOS Message app.
Improved session resume performance when Sametime is in background

The new client introduces background operation for up to 10 minutes. In user terms, this means that if you leave Sametime and then go back to it within 10 minutes, response will be immediate because the app does not have to reconnect. Even if away for more than 10 minutes, the reconnect scenario is quicker while the connection is re-established.
Optionally share user's location (iOS version 5.0 and up)
If enabled in the application setting, the current city location is shared as part of your status.
3rd generation iPad Retina display support
Includes hi-resolution graphics to take advantage of the new iPad retina display.
Configuration now settable via URL
Instead of having to manually configure the server settings, a Sametime administrator can configure a URL in a common location, or send via text message or email. For example, the following URL configures the app for Renovations servers and partially fills in the user name.

Full details on this URL are in the Sametime documentation wiki.
There is another server setting to control features on the proxy server that admins may be interested in. For example, you can disable location broadcasting and "save to device contacts" features in the mobile clients.

Here are the new in-app settings. We tried to put the most commonly used settings here and others in the Settings app. Tip of the day, I found out the hard way: if you want Return to equal Send, then it's in the Settings app.
Image:Sametime iOS Apps Updated

And here is a picture of the chat history feature.
Image:Sametime iOS Apps Updated

All in all, this is an update that you'll want to get now.

Chris Reckling

Chris Reckling | 2 August 2012 01:30:00 PM ET |

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