I got an email a few hours ago from a user, Ross Koning, who could not get Tuna Pitch to work after upgrading iOS 7. It turns out that there’s a new Privacy setting in the system Settings app that needs to be enabled for Tuna Pitch. Go to the Settings app, tap on Privacy, then on Microphone, and then turn on Microphone access for Tuna Pitch. It seems like it defaults to off if you upgrade, so try turning it on if you don’t get any audio input in Tuna Pitch.
I think the iOS app market is maturing, with the novelty of apps wearing off, and most every need is already covered. I also think that the future of app development is with teams. What I’ve been seeing over the past 5 years that the App Store has existed is constant change. In the first few years, one person working over a couple of weeks can make a hit. Those days are over.
What I’m seeing when I go to conferences and meetups is that most apps are made by teams at startups or agencies. What I’m seeing in my own apps, which are mostly paid apps, is my revenue has dropped by 30% in the past year. I’m seeing on Twitter that other developers with paid apps reporting similar declines.
The gold rush is over, but people still don’t get the memo. Too many people are trying to hop on the App Store gold rush of 5 years ago, and there will still people just getting on the bandwagon years from now. There’s a glut of new apps, and even if most of the them are crappy, almost every idea and every need is covered five times over. That means you need to stand out from the crowd in some way, with a better app or better marketing.
Even after the gold rush is over, there’s still gold in the hills. It’s just harder to make a successful app that gets noticed, and requires teams with the specializations and experience to quickly and efficiently release one, the same way that the remaining gold requires geologists who know the land and heavy machinery to get to it.
It used to be that you needed to know a little bit of everything to make a successful app on the App Store. You had to be a designer, programmer, marketer, and all-around businessperson. Now there are services and agencies which can fill in for design, programming, or marketing. There are now agencies which will do everything for you, for a price. All you need is an idea and money, for which there are many funded startups and corporate brands.
And on a team, you can have specialists as well as generalists. The designers can keep up with the latest UI fashions and quickly make mockups that the programmers, who can focus on just the latest APIs and capabilities of the latest iPhone. And the people overseeing the entire process can look at different ways to make money with the app, whether paid up front, in-app purchase, subscriptions, or something else.
There are still some bright spots for the independent developer. The Mac App Store was never as big as the iOS App Store, and the Mac developers I’ve talked to say that sales are about the same. I’ve also talked to iOS developers who make a living from niche areas where you can charge $20 or up for an app. And there are individuals and teams who do contract work to make enough money to work on their own ideas and products at a loss.
I don’t know if we’ll ever get back to the ideal of being independent and living off of your own products in the App Store, instead of having to pitch your idea to venture capitalists, or to work for some corporate brand. I do know we need to adapt to change. Free with in-app purchase or subscription pricing looks more sustainable than paid apps. We may need to form ourselves into small teams, because being independent doesn’t mean you have to do everything yourself. I see this as a challenge to figure out what’s next.
We will hopefully be releasing Sound Studio 4.6.6 later today in the Mac App Store, and it fixes a rather small but pesky bug with opening WAV files that are not in the integer PCM (uncompressed, vanilla) format. These are sometimes in floating-point PCM format, and sometimes compressed with MP3 within a WAV file wrapper. This update of Sound Studio will allow you to open those files, with the caveat that certain of these files will still not open, and you will see Sound Studio show a progress window stuck at 0% for opening that file. The app is still responsive, but it’s just waiting for the system to decompress the audio data. I think it’s a bug with the Apple-provided API for dealing with the data, and for now, this is the best solution we have. (When I do a stack trace of where it’s stuck, it’s in the system code.)
The new update will also fix a bug users have been reporting about using audio playthrough with the Blue Snowfiake microphone. Turns out, mono microphones weren’t working well with the playthrough code, but that’s been fixed now.
We created a step-by-step guide for adding the ability to save as MP3 in Sound Studio. This guide is applicable to users who’ve purchased or intend to purchase Sound Studio from the Mac App Store.
If you haven’t already, first purchase and install Sound Studio 4 from the Mac App Store. Click on the “Download on the Mac App Store” button in the top right corner of the Sound Studio [Downloads page] (http://felttip.com/ss/downloads.html”).
Launch Sound Studio to make sure that it was properly installed on your computer. This step is important to ensure that this process works correctly.
Download and install LAME, a free MP3 encoder, available from the Sound Studio [Downloads page] (http://felttip.com/ss/downloads.html”).
Download a second copy of Sound Studio 4 from the [Downloads page] (http://felttip.com/ss/downloads.html”). Do not save over the copy of Sound Studio you purchased and downloaded from the Mac App Store.
Launch this copy of Sound Studio downloaded from the Felt Tip website. Check File > Save As for the option to save as MP3.
Delete the version of Sound Studio downloaded from the Mac App Store to avoid any confusion. From now on, you can use the activated version of Sound Studio from the Felt Tip website and get updates through the app.
Try a fresh install of Sound Studio by deleting all copies of Sound Studio on your computer and then running through the steps above.
Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with a copy of your Sound Studio 4 iTunes receipt or a screenshot of the “0 Launches Left” window in Sound Studio. Let us know that you’re requesting a license code to activate Sound Studio 4.
I’ve added support for the Wahoo Blue HR Bluetooth heart rate monitor to Run 5k, Run 10k, and Run Half Marathon. The apps should connect with any Wahoo Fitness Bluetooth LE sensor, but currently the only one that I know of is the Blue HR. ANT+ sensors and ones from other companies are currently not supported, and that’s mostly because I only have the Blue HR to test with. Run 5k and Run 10k updates are available on the App Store now, and Half Marathon should be updated soon.
To use the Blue HR, you don’t need to pair it in the Settings app. You just need to make sure you’re wearing it, and that it’s transmitting a signal. You can use the Wahoo Fitness app to verify that it works. Then when you start a workout in the Run apps, it should automatically connect with the sensor. If it gets a valid heart rate reading from the sensor, the app will show a number next to the heart icon in the bottom right of the screen in Run 5k and Run 10k.
Sound Studio 4.6.1 is now in the Mac App Store, which is good because it fixes several bugs and adds a few new features, but it also removes a couple features such as saving to MP3.
Sound Studio 4.6 in the Mac App Store uses App Sandboxing, and because of this and other rules of the Mac App Store, there are some features which have changed or are removed from the Mac App Store version. However, we do have a workaround.
First, the ability to save in MP3 format when the LAME.framework is installed is no longer available on the Mac App Store version. This is because of a Mac App Store rule that prohibits downloadable software that changes the how the app works after it has been approved by Apple. I can’t include the LAME framework in the app, so I can’t reference it from the app.
Second, the way AppleScript and anything that uses AppleScript such as our Monbots has changed, so the first time you save to a new location, Sound Studio will prompt you to get permission to save there. I think this is a small inconvenience, and if you use the same location to save your batch processed files, it will only have to prompt you just one time.
The workaround that we have is that the version of Sound Studio you can download from felttip.com (which was called the Trial version) now detects if you already have bought and run a copy of Sound Studio from the Mac App Store, and accepts that as the license. This means you don’t need to buy or enter a license code for the app if you already bought it on the Mac App Store, while being able to use a non-sandboxed version of the app, and get updates as soon as we post them on our web site. You can even delete the MAS version after running both the MAS version once, and then the non-MAS version once, since the app will make a copy of the MAS receipt.
We have three new things for the holidays! First is the new release of Run Half Marathon, a 13-week GPS-based running app for half marathon training. And second is that our Run 5k and Run 10k have been updated with GPS support to show distance and pace. All of these require iOS 6, so you might need to update your device’s system software.
I spent a lot of time fine-tuning the GPS (Core Location actually), which is especially hard in the urban canyons of Manhattan. I got a pretty good GPS signal along the rivers and and in the larger parks, but along the city streets, the trees and buildings can get in the way of GPS. Each location fix comes with an accuracy level, and the better the accuracy, the more I trust the location, so the app smoothes the location track based on that. There’s even more smoothing applied to the pace information, so you might have to run a few hundred feet before it settles on the new pace.
I also had to deal with some GPS location fixes coming in out of order, so the timestamps would sometimes jump backwards in time. But I think overall the distance and pace smoothing works better than most apps out there. The Core Location stuff is in both apps, but I’m showing maps only in the Half Marathon app since I didn’t want to clutter up the 5k and 10k apps.
The other big change is that I’m now using the iOS Sharing sheets for Twitter and Facebook, so you don’t have to log in separately to these apps. This should make for a more seamless experience using Run 5k and Run 10k. And you can post your pace and distance info now.
We haven’t updated our web site for the new versions since they came out so quickly. I wasn’t expecting iTunes Connect to be kept open until today. They finally closed it today, but they approved our updates just before they did so. So we’ll be updating our web site in the new year.
|Page 1 of 21||Next »|