Press 1.5

It’s been a long time coming, but Press 1.5 is here! We put a lot of love and care into making the experience better, along with …drumroll… a night theme. We’ve polished the entire UI, and added new gestures, an optional immersive mode for KitKat devices, and the ability to quickly save articles to Pocket or Instapaper with one tap. We’ve also added system font-scaling for accessibility and new localizations for several languages. Instead of blabbering on, we thought it’d just be best to show you. You can go get it in the Play Store now. Enjoy!

New swipe gestures, quickly mark as read, mark all articles above/below as read, and immersive mode

Quickly star, share or save to Pocket/Instapaper

Night theme, swipe to mark as read/starred, and immersive mode

Press 1.4

We’re really excited to announce the newest version of Press that we’ve been working hard on. With version 1.4, Press delivers two new features that have been a long time coming:

Fever is the fourth service offered in Press and fills a gap that wasn’t covered before: self-hosted RSS. Fever support has been one of the top requests we’ve received since Press was launched and we’re excited that it is finally ready.

For the subway riders and travelers out there, image caching will be a welcome addition. Any cached images are fully viewable while disconnected from the network. You can enable/disable image caching in the settings, or simply long-press the sync icon to start a manual one-time image cache.

We also want to make Press more accessible to as many people as possible, so we took another step in that direction with version 1.4. You now have the ability to underline links in articles, which is helpful for color blind users.

It wouldn’t be a major update to Press without refining the interface – we just can’t help it. We’ve minimized some of the elements on the screen to bring the content more front-and-center. This includes toning down shadows and reducing bolded text. The result is a more natural feel as you read.

Those were just a few of the things addressed in version 1.4. Here is the complete changelog:

  • Fever support
  • Offline image caching
  • Manual one-time image cache (hold sync icon)
  • Totally redesigned Settings
  • Added preference to show titles-only in article list
  • Added preference to show titles-only in large widget
  • Added preference to disable double-tap for Readability
  • Added accessibility preference to underline article links
  • Image viewer improvements
  • Freshened the UI throughout the app
  • Performance improvements
  • Fixed syncing issues
  • Lots of bug fixes

Thanks so much to everyone who provided awesome feedback over the past few months!

 

The Indie Developer Side of the Nexus Program

The Verge published an article today titled The Moto X proves Google still needs the Nexus program. Go read that – it’s a good article and it discusses the history and purpose of the Nexus program in depth. Android Director of Engineering, Dave Burke, had this to say on the purpose of the program:

Basically what Nexus allows us to do is set the standard … [we can] demonstrate how Android runs and hopefully influence other device manufacturers to take what we’ve done and do even better.

There’s another part of the story I think is just as important, though, and it often isn’t discussed: the indie developer side of the story and its relationship with Nexus. We launched Press last December, and from the beginning, Nexus has been a huge part of our success in the Play Store. Not only were the Nexus devices a large inspiration for us to create a thoughtful and well-designed app, it’s also been a big chunk of our sales. We’ve seen that the types of people that are attracted to a Nexus device are also more likely to pay for an app that’s well designed. The Nexus program also allowed us to create a forward-looking 4.0+ only app much sooner than would have otherwise been possible. This is a win-win scenario from a developer’s perspective.

Stock Android is a fantastic, clean experience compared to other OEMs’ take on the platform, and Google is able to update the devices quickly over-the-air, ensuring the latest version of the OS on Nexus devices. In fact, Android 4.3 was released just over a week ago, and we already have 33% of our customers running this latest version of the operating system. That’s a HUGE advantage for any Android developer wishing to push their app forward in the ecosystem.

Here’s a full breakdown of our current customer stats:

Android 4.3: 33%
Android 4.2: 35%
Android 4.1: 26%
Android 4.0: 6%

We genuinely hope Google continues the Nexus program far into the future. It helps drive the quality and economy of the Play Store ecosystem more than meets the eye.

Feedly Cloud Available Now in Press

The new Feedly Cloud service is now a part of Press 1.3.2 and we couldn’t be more excited! Feedly provides a great web interface and is a perfect partner for Press. If you haven’t had a chance to check out what Feedly has to offer, head over to http://feedly.com and see for yourself.

A few notes about Feedly integration in Press:

  • To connect with your Feedly account, sign out through Settings and sign into Feedly.
  • If you do not have an existing Feedly account, sign into Feedly with your Google account and your Google Reader data will be automatically imported.
  • Feedly is automatically migrating new users from Google Reader to their new Feedly Cloud platform. This should be completed by June 21st for all users.

Thanks to Feedly for being a great partner and providing the community with a new platform before the imminent death of Google Reader!

Press 1.3

The past few months have been a whirlwind of chaos and opportunity in the world of RSS. Since Google announced that Reader would be shutting down on July 1st, there has been a scramble to define the future of RSS. A lot has happened, even for the two of us here at TwentyFive Squares. Through a lot of ups and downs, we are genuinely excited about the future of RSS and Press.

With version 1.3, Press is turning over two proverbial new leaves. The first major change is that Press will be supporting two new services, Feed Wrangler and Feedbin. We have been in communication with both David Smith (Feed Wrangler) and Ben Ubois (Feedbin) for a while now and feel that they are each invested in building something that will last. We’re extremely excited to work with them and offer their great services through Press!

The second major change is that the phone interface has been rethought and redesigned. Our goal from the beginning has been to continually improve and refine Press. Sometimes that means a new coat of paint. Sometimes that means you tear off a wing of the house and rebuild it. In version 1.3, we did both! We’ve listened to a lot of feedback and we think this new workflow is both simpler and more efficient.

We’re excited about this update and see it as a springboard for the direction of Press. There is still more to come, but if you will excuse us, we still have a lot of work to do :)

Press + Feedly

We’re thrilled to announce that we’ve partnered with Feedly to provide Feedly integration in Press. Feedly just announced a free service for select 3rd-party apps and you can see all the details on their blog. After the Google Reader retirement was announced, adding Feedly support in Press was our most popular request, so we’re really excited about this opportunity. Our plan is to provide an app update in a couple weeks that will allow you to easily add your Feedly account and have the same RSS experience you’ve always enjoyed using Press.

Our thanks to Feedly for providing the community with such a great product. As always, we’ll give more details as the date becomes closer, and let us know if you have any questions. Thanks for all your support during this ride!