TimeTune 2.4 brings with it a nice set of improvements. But besides the new features you will see externally, a lot of things have changed internally.
First, we made a huge restructuring in the app, rewriting many parts of the core from the ground up. Second, we optimized many other processes, using better algorithms and resources. And third, we made a lot of code reordering and cleaning (an obligation if we want to preserve our sanity as developers!).
All in all, a strong update that brings the app to a more mature place and prepares the platform for future improvements.
But enough of that. Let’s see what’s new in TimeTune 2.4!
7 DAYS IN THE TIMELINE AND WIDGET
The timeline and widget will now show the next 7 days instead of today and tomorrow. This was a highly requested feature and it’s finally been possible to add thanks to the general restructuring.
But that’s not all. Each item in the timeline is now treated as an independent instance with its own information. This allows us to show more specific data when clicking on them:
(Clicking on an item in the timeline will now show the exact date and time for that unique instance)
Date headers will show additional information too, especially when the programmer is enabled:
(Clicking on a date header will show which routines are going to be enabled that day, plus the option to edit the corresponding program)
This approach paves the way for future improvements. Now it could be possible to add other kinds of information to the timeline, like statistics, tracking, etc.
Now that you’re more likely to scroll through the timeline, it makes more sense to hide the upper part of the toolbar when scrolling, like we do in routines:
(Timeline section with the upper part of the toolbar hidden)
The date on top will change dinamically, so you always know which day you’re looking at.
The persistent notification will now show events, reminders and timers besides routine activities (another requested feature enabled by the new internal design):
(Persistent notification showing a reminder as next item)
When we say events, it’s important to note that we are referring to TimeTune events. Events from Google Calendar are not shown (yet). We need a way to prevent all-day events like holidays or birthdays to be shown as ‘Now’ for the whole day. This will be done in a future release.
The persistent notification will have a higher priority by default too, so it doesn’t get buried under other notifications.
A few adjustments have been made to the widget to make it more consistent with the timeline section:
(Times, titles and comments are now properly aligned in the widget)
In addition, clicking on a widget item will open the app and show specific information about it, like we do in the timeline section. If you just want to open the app, you can click on the ‘TimeTune’ header.
Note: if you don’t want to see the ‘TimeTune’ header, you can hide it in the widget settings.
MANUAL MODE VS PROGRAMMER MODE
Many users in the Pro version kept reporting that their routines got disabled every day for no reason.
The problem was that the routine programmer (Main menu / Programmer) was enabled and they didn’t know they were in ‘programmer mode’. If the default program was set as ‘All routines disabled’, their routines would be disabled automatically every day.
We needed a way to make it clear when the app is in ‘manual mode’ or in ‘programmer mode’.
To achieve this, two things have changed. First, when the programmer is enabled the app replaces the routine toggles in the ‘Routines’ section for programmer icons:
(Left: routines when the programmer is disabled; Right: routines when the programmer is enabled)
Clicking on the programmer icon in a routine card will take you to the programmer section, where you can create a program for the day. If a user wants to enable routines manually, he needs to disable the programmer and go back to ‘manual mode’.
Another change happened in the Timeline section. When the programmer is enabled, date headers will show the programmed routines and a programmer icon to make it clear the schedule comes from a program. Clicking on a date header will show additional information and a button to edit the program:
(Left: timeline when the programmer is enabled; Right: clicking on a date header shows information and actions about the program)
NO MORE FAKE ALARM AT 00:00
Another big complaint in the previous version was the fake alarm that appeared every day at 00:00. The only purpose for this alarm was to wake the application up and do internal tasks (calculating internal fields, enabling the program for the day, etc), but it needed to happen every day exactly at 00:00.
Now, with the new approach, this is done in advance and we don’t need the midnight alarm. If you don’t have upcoming events, timers, reminders or activities, the alarm icon just disappears.
Apart from this, there have been many other additional improvements and optimizations, both internally and externally, like:
- Adding support for Android 8.1
- Bringing translations up to date and adding the new Chinese translation
- Respecting event durations when editing events
- Using constraint layouts in the timeline to make it scroll with fluidity
- Using SQLite compiled statements to update the timeline faster
- Solving unusual crash reports from the developer console
- Improving the technical report in advanced settings
- Removing unused resources, etc
We hope you like the new changes. People in the beta program have enjoyed them so far.
But if there’s anything you’d like to change or any suggestion you’d like to make, please leave a comment behind. You know your ideas are always welcome! 😉