Social App with Dating Functions, Beta Testing

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App Development

many thanks to the applevis community for helping create better voice over implementation, and leading the way to build a better app for folks (sighted, visually impaired, and blind) who want to make new friends, or seek casual dating and long term relationship opportunities.

Vorail is a voice-only messaging community to ask, answer, and make new friends. The Vorail community includes folks who are married, single, and divorced. Some are looking to make new friends, while others seek casual dating or a serious relationship.

please join our beta testing community, your voice matters.

"you fall in love with the voice first, there’s so much richness and intonation within a voice that gives clues to a person’s personality" (Kevin Satizabal, Royal London Society for the Blind)

thanks,
tom

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Submitted by Rolando Jr Ogayon on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

In reply to by Vorail

Hi Tom,

I was not flicking up or down here for I know that it will spell out the word in focus when the rotor is set to"character." I only slide a finger from top to bottom or vise-versa slowly, to easily know what are listed in the search result page. it's another way to navigate the screen. Sometimes flicking left and right tires my thumb so I slide instead.

Since the search result is displayed in the following manner,

username button,
like button
username button,
like button
... flicking left and right works in my iPhone. But slowly sliding my finger down or up, VO skips some item.

If I may suggest, search result must be displayed in columns. like below,
username button, like button
username button, like button
username button, like button
... this way, searcher can slide a finger on the left of the screen to hear the names listed, double tap the name of the ones he or she is interested in listening to, then flick right and activated the "like" button if he or she like what he or she heard..

Regarding the "Profile Page"
I agree in user having a profile page because there are people who are afraid of recording their voice, even no one around is listening. A simple page will do I guess.

Just my thoughts,
J

Submitted by Dave82 on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Ok yes I can reproduce the bug reported by @Jhon. If you slide your finger down the very right side of the screen, you will correctly hear"Like" all the way down the list. If you do the same on the left of the screen, you should hear "Play voice of..." for each result as you slide down. However on some entries you instead hear "Like" instead.
As @Jhon said, this is an annoyance for those who prefer to explore by touch rather than just flick thru results.
On a similar note, on the main menu screen, it's quite difficult to find the buttons without using flicking. If exploring the screen, you seem to have to put finger exactly on the button label. Could the button areas be made bigger?

Submitted by Dave82 on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

I like the idea of a main, kind of introductory, recording that is analogous to a profile pic on other services, which can say whatever you want really, as someone else said earlier in the thread.
Then perhaps if you click into the profile there could be other recordings too.
I do though also really like the concept of the ask function. And the question of the day could be interesting too, perhaps that could be a little area of its own in the app.

Submitted by Rolando Jr Ogayon on Thursday, December 17, 2015

Hello again.

I am doing another test on the Search Result display.

Test 1.
Method use: Flick Right
Expectation: VO should speak "Play voice of <name> button" and like button.
Note: One line per flick per item heard
Result as follow:
Play voice of Lupita button,
Like button
Play voice of Bethany button,
Like button
Play voice of Shanett button,
Like button
Play voice of Tiffany button,
Like button
Play voice of Ocean Girl button,
Like button
Play voice of Cat button,
Like button
Play voice of Leena button,
Like button
Play voice of Shelly button,
Like button

Result Summary: 8 names and 8 likes heard.

Test 2..
Method used: Slide Down Slow
Expectation: VO should speak "Play voice of <name> button" only.
Note: One line per item heard
Result as follow:
Play voice of Lupita button
Play voice of Bethany button
Play voice of Shanett button
Play voice of Tiffany button
Play voice of Ocean Girl button
Like Button
Like Button
Play voice of Shelley button
Summary: 6 names and 2 likes heard.

Conclusion: Doing a finger slide down in the middle of the screen, VO skips some names and also reads some like buttons.

Although it is OK to flick right, it will be tiresome at times (example: you have 100 names in the search result, therefore, it's 200 flick right too get to the bottom of the list).

By the way, thanks to @Dave82. thought, I was hallucinating in my previous post. LOL

HTH
J

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, December 17, 2015

@Jhon @Dave82,

thank you for the crystal clear bug description, i was able to repeat it just as you described. opened tech ticket, we can fix this :)

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, December 17, 2015

@Dave82, got it, if home screen has four buttons, each button clickable area should be about one quarter of screen. opened tech issue for this, we'll get it done.

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, December 17, 2015

@Dave82, added your feedback to the tech ticket for this issue. i am 100% on the same page. i think changing current button label "Add new voice" to the facebook question "What's on your mind?" = "a main, kind of introductory, recording that is analogous to a profile pic on other services, which can say whatever you want really".

users will have ability to edit their profile page, and profile page will include each recording. when we find users, we will be able to hear all their answers. this update will probably be baked into the new 'ask', 'answer' feature.

i like 'question of the day', makes it easier for me to speak on topics (to enlarge my footprint, enable me to show higher on search results), but this feature likely to be on the back burner, until we see how 'ask', 'answer' is used / received.

thanks!
tom

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, December 17, 2015

In reply to by Hadi

@Hadi,

"It sounds like that your identity is defined by that single voice file."
.. in current build, yes, we are all only one voice each. this will change, all of us want to hear the how the people we like feel over time and across a number of different topics.

"Perhaps someone wants his/her profile voice tag to be teasing, or some other guy wants to focus on his professions, or a girl wants to sing a short song."
.. one possibility is changing "Add new voice" to "What's on your mind?" (the question facebook uses), and make it possible to hear all of the voice recordings of people that interest us, and not only the most recent one. another possibility is provide a list of questions, you choose which question or questions you answer. third possibility is leave it blank, "You as the question, you answer the question you ask.". my view, is we want to maximize choice and make space for creativity, but at same time, a good, narrow question makes it easier for people to answer.

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, December 17, 2015

In reply to by Hadi

@Haid, added your feedback to the tech ticket for ask/answer. what you describe is what will happen if 'the stars align'. we hear a voice we like, and easily able to hear more voices from that person, gain an understanding of who they are through their own words and speech.

your ideas on the questions make me think, maybe we should include some default questions and require answering before asking:
.. on day 1, she downloads vorail, and answers some of the standard questions, example: "what is your favorite type of food?"
.. on day 2, you discover her through search and hear her voice answer to the general question, "what's on your mind?". you see that she has answered the question about food, you 'unlock' her answer by answering it yourself first. that way she gets each time she gives. you can also ask her a question she has yet to answer, but you need to record your answer before asking her = when she answers, she auto gets your answer in return. give and get bound in one. if you ask her a private question like preferences in sexual interactions, she will know she auto gets your answer when she answers herself.

this approach probably too complex for version one, but what do you think about the logic / approach?

Submitted by Hadi on Thursday, December 17, 2015

@Vorail
@Vorail
Regarding the profile tag voice:
I see that you provided three choices here.
1: a general; but restrictive question of "What's in your mind?" which a user could reply with not one, but more voice recordings of him/herself talking about various things, like facebook statuses! I think This is cool and this my favourit choice. This means that the user will be free to define his profile cover while having the opertunity of recording more voices at different feelings or situations!
2: The profile tag is defined by a set of predefined questions which the user needs to answer. I think this is challenging and fun, and This will be a unique feature. This will help the other interested party to listen to clear-givven answers; thus, it leads to a better understanding of that person. I think I like this idea as well, but I'd like to see it in action before make it my favourit choice.
3: The user will put up his own questions, and answer his own questions: I think this is lame and would be against the purpose of this app.

Regarding the Q&A system that you suggested
First, My personal opinion: It is really awesome and I want to see this in action. The only challenge for you would be designing those questions.
But let's also see this in other points of view as well. This means that Vorail will be an application which requires full interaction and communication. This also means that there won't be any one sided interactions and profile loitering. This means that you have to open up to the other party so she or he could open up to you.
The points that i mentioned might be fine for some people, but some people won't be fine by these. so I think you need more feedback on this unless you have chosen the course of this app already.
edit: more comments on the q&A subject. This'll be something very new and unique. I'd say It'd be super exciting if My answers on a subject would be matched with a lady that I like! and... Also It'd be so LOL if the answers don't match and you realise... that person is just not for you. :)

Cheers
Hadi

Submitted by Vorail on Friday, December 18, 2015

In reply to by Hadi

@ Hadi

build 151217 scheduled to go live within the hour. it has new wording, "what's on your mind?". working on new profile page that shows more than just most recent recording. most of the coding this week is on ask & answer feature. it is not going to be what we want, but takes us one step closer. i loaded your ideas in previous post to the two relevant tech tickets. in our company, coders create what's in their mind, but our posts effect how they think :) and after first version goes live, continued feedback can shape it into something more useful.

thanks!
tom

Submitted by Vorail on Wednesday, December 23, 2015

still plugging away creating the ask - answer feature. also doing basic plumbing = getting search results taking too long, changed servers to reduce time it takes to search. will publish a new build for external testers as soon as this round of coding complete.
happy holidays!
tom

Submitted by Vorail on Friday, January 1, 2016

new build published today for external beta testers. happy new years :)

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Saturday, January 16, 2016

The beta test is over. Now what?

Submitted by Earle on Saturday, January 16, 2016

I don't think the beta has ended yet. A new build just came out a few days ago and judging by what has been said, it sounds like there is still work to be done. I was using the beta earlier today.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Saturday, January 16, 2016

In reply to by Earle

I got the new version and when I go to the app, it says that beta has expire OK button.

Submitted by Earle on Saturday, January 16, 2016

A new build just came out. Check TestFlight and see if there is an update.

Submitted by Vorail on Saturday, January 16, 2016

@Holger Fiallo, my experience same as @Earle. i open test flight, and it shows the current build which is 160115. then i tap install, update, or open. i googled the issue, as recently as may 2015 others app developers reported same issue as you. developers reported this bug to apple, and it is supposed to have been fixed. would it help if the invitation email was resent to you? there are some reports that this is a workaround to the issue. thanks, tom

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Saturday, January 16, 2016

In reply to by Vorail

I just got the new one and install. The problem went away. Question. I notice in search select male or female is gone.I take it will be like this from now?

Submitted by Vorail on Sunday, January 17, 2016

In reply to by Holger Fiallo

@ Holger Fiallo in the next build, search by gender should be re-enabled. tech removed the option during testing to encourage more ask and answer, which helps find bugs and areas for improvement. we are getting closer to public release, time to make that function live again.

Submitted by Vorail on Wednesday, January 20, 2016

@ Holger Fiallo gender setting in search page did not go live in newest build. tech position is users choose when setting up app the first time a preference to meet male, female, or both. tech's position is we should live with our choices. my position is we should be able to change our preferences and settings. this will probably only be settled as we receive more user feedback.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Wednesday, January 20, 2016

In reply to by Vorail

I did select female but some how it show both. Maybe when we get more women it will improve.

Submitted by Vorail on Wednesday, January 20, 2016

In reply to by Holger Fiallo

right, i should have mentioned that. even though we select the gender we want to meet, tech has disabled it temporarily during beta testing. as we get closer to marketing, we will focus more on inviting women onto the platform and then re-enabling that feature.

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, January 21, 2016

New:
.. “Ask All” button
.. lots of fixes: eg. newly received messages were not always showing in inbox, and after recording, focus returned to top of previous screen instead of previous position

Next:
.. continue to improve and fix app based on your feedback, working through the list
.. submit version to apple for general release, and then focus on marketing (apple approval process often takes between two and five weeks)

Submitted by Vorail on Friday, January 22, 2016

Vorail 1.50 (160121) for iOS is ready to test

New:
.. ‘ask all’ questions will continue to show in everybody’s inbox, but after the first person replies, the ‘ask all’ question will show on main feed as well (home screen). all answers to ‘ask all’ will also show on main feed. there have been several very interesting ‘ask all’, i answered, am curious to see how others answered same question. this could bring us closer to ‘natural discovery’, to encourage people talking and making new connections.

Next:
.. fix the main feed user interface. with addition of ‘ask all’ question and answers, navigating the main screen requires even more flicks than before. our goal is fewer flicks to reach the voices we want to hear and meet.

Submitted by Vorail on Wednesday, January 27, 2016

thank you for participating in vorail beta testing. the recent builds have been very different than the first builds. starting to focus on expanding the vorail community. your answers could help shape our futures :)

1) marketing
.. any interest in sharing vorail ask-all or system question answers? eg. could sms text message a voice to your friends, or post to your facebook or twitter page.

.. any interest in having a web url of your voice profile (the system questions you answered), that you could post in places where you want people to know you better? eg. a url you could post in traditional dating sites.

.. any interest in a tool for you to get voice endorsements from your friends? vorail can call a number you choose, play a voice message of your choice, and record the reply after the beep.

2) tech

.. in the most recent build, can you hear clearly the "beep" before
recording starts? do you still have the situation that vorail cuts off the
beginning of your recording?

.. are you using Rotor of VoiceOver? if yes, we can update vorail to more easily navigate home feed using rotor and headers.

.. how important it is for you that Vorail to connect to FaceBook / Twitter
and other social networking sites? if so, why?

.. would you want to export your recordings? (if yes, we want to make sure it's in the right format)

thank you!
tom

Submitted by Imaginingstuff on Wednesday, January 27, 2016

I would like to test it as well!

Submitted by Vorail on Wednesday, January 27, 2016

In reply to by Imaginingstuff

hi @LabAnimalOne, apple requires they send you the invite to testflight beta testing for vorail. please post your email address here or email to me at pixtas@gmail.com

vorail is also available on the app store, but the app store version is weeks old, missing the new features and bug fixes. in the beta program, we can offer multiple builds each week, and incorporate feedback faster :)

thanks!
tom

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Notice that the button for profile of a person shows nothing. FYI. I do not use twitter, or facebook and not planning to do so in the future. I am sure some of us do not care for twit or facebook. Yet I am understand many do so you probably will connect it to it. No I am not interested in importing or exporting my recording. The recording works well and I hear the beat without any problem.

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, January 28, 2016

hi @Holger, i tested on my device, i double tap on profile button, and all of the person's answers show on page, i can flick through them, double tap to play. when you double tap profile and nothing shows, whose profile is it? i will try to replicate the error on my device.

i also am not a facebook or twitter fan, but i would like a link / url of the ask-all threads i find interesting. i have tried pof and craigslist. maybe if i am trying to meet a new person on pof, i could send a url of my voice profile page, or a url of an ask-all in which i am participating, and the other person could get to know my personality. sharing personalities feels like a good way to feel if there is chemistry. is there anyone outside of vorail, on another app or messaging system, that you may want to share an ask-all thread with?

thanks!
tom

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Thursday, January 28, 2016

I had the following strange problem with voiceover when I attempted to record an answer to a question by one of the profile. i could not rase the volume back. I had to restart my iPhone. Anyone with the same problem?

Submitted by Vorail on Thursday, January 28, 2016

In reply to by Holger Fiallo

hi @Holger, i had same issue yesterday. in my case, i changed device rotation while recording an answer, and it killed the volume on voice over. any chance your device orientation changed while recording?

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Friday, January 29, 2016

Getting message beta has expire

Submitted by Vorail on Saturday, January 30, 2016

hi @Holger, each build is good for 60 days. most recent build was 5 days ago, it still has 55 days before expiring. i am not sure why apple is showing message that beta is about to expire. do you receive this message as an email, as a push notification, or in another format?

on the recording issue, has recording failed again? we have not been able to recreate the bug. we are changing settings that relate to device orientation changes while recording, the next build is scheduled for release around next wed.

thanks!
tom

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Saturday, January 30, 2016

Get this when I go the app. I get the message and OK button. Do not know about recording because I am not able to access it.

Submitted by Vorail on Saturday, January 30, 2016

In reply to by Holger Fiallo

@Holger Fiallo. what happens if you delete test flight app, and then click the link from the most recent apple email inviting you to test flight beta testing for vorail? i can remove and then add your name on the apple page to re-send you the invitation. the other route, there is an old version of vorail available for general release on app store, but it has more bugs and does not have ask-all feature. should i have apple resend you the invite to beta testing for vorail?

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Saturday, January 30, 2016

In reply to by Vorail

OK. Send it. This means that I need to delete Vorail? Not test flight?

Submitted by Vorail on Sunday, January 31, 2016

In reply to by Holger Fiallo

hi @Holger Fiallo, a few minutes ago apple should have resent the email invite to test flight beta testing for vorail. you could try deleting vorail, then re-install from test flight. or you could try deleting vorail and test flight, then following link from most recent apple email invite.

thanks,
tom

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Monday, February 1, 2016

Sorry miss the email about re=invite. Please send it again.

Submitted by Vorail on Tuesday, February 2, 2016

In reply to by Holger Fiallo

@Holger Fiallo, re-invite re-sent :)

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Thursday, February 4, 2016

FYI. Again had the same problem. I attempted to respond to SARA but my sppeker volume went down. I had to restart my iPhone. I was in speeker mode.

Submitted by Vorail on Friday, February 5, 2016

In reply to by Holger Fiallo

hi @Holger, new beta release on friday, but it may get postponed till early next week. lets see if we fixed the bug. about what percentage of the time is the recording failing? thanks, tom

hi @Pavel Ondra, that would be great, thank you! apple requires that they email you the invite to the beta version. please post your email here or contact me at pixtas@gmail.com
there is an old version of the app (vorail) in app store, but it lacks many features and has more bugs. we have come a long way in implementing voice over in a better way, which the betas reflect. apple sometimes takes over five weeks to approve a version for app store general release, but less than a day to approve beta versions.

tom

Submitted by Vorail on Saturday, February 6, 2016

new:
.. home feed: lots of changes. flick right equals next person, with rotor set to actions, flick up and down to rotate through play voice, answer, see all answers, view profile.
.. inbox: public ask-all questions are labeled. private questions on top in inbox feed, then user generated ask-all, then vorail ask all. after you listen to a private ask or answer, on next visit it will disappear. this is to keep inbox less crowded. if you receive an ask all you like, reply with an ask answer before leaving inbox, we only get one chance. your new inbox may have old voices first time, start to listen to the messages once, next time you open the app they will be gone.

.. match: match screen shows who you like, who likes you and when it is mutual. when it is mutual, you and the other person can chat in a traditional instant messaging type screen (voice, not text). all old likes have been erased. start liking anew :)

how is the new home feed? how is the new inbox? how is the new voice instant messenger?

thanks!
tom

Submitted by JennyM on Saturday, February 6, 2016

If you're still looking for testers then count me as interested.

Submitted by Earle on Sunday, February 7, 2016

I am really enjoying this app a lot. It has evolved quite a bit since I first started testing. It is my understanding that flicking right should move you to the next person. This isn't working for me. When I flick right I see answers from the same person. I do like having the actions in the router. It would be great to have a way to quickly move to the next person. I was hoping that flicking right would do this. It can take quite a while to get through the search results if you have to see all the answers from each person. I also don't think that having questions disappear from the inbox is a good idea. Sometimes I like to browse my inbox and go back later to answer questions. I think we should be given a choice to delete from the inbox.

hi @Earle,
thank you for the feedback, it's the food we need to grow.
1) skipping to next person
on current build, flick right skips to next voice recording, which may not be next person. i described this incorrectly in my message to beta testers. on the next build, plan is two finger double tap to skip to next person (not just next voice). i tested this earlier today during internal testing, but it is not yet working. what do you think about this solution: right flick is next voice, double two finger tap is next person?
2) ephemeral inbox
during internal testing, i objected to voices disappearing after i listen to them. i like to run a voice inbox like i manage gmail inbox. consume the content during the day, and reply at night. after new build went live, my feelings changed, i started appreciating the snapchat type approach to inbox. my inbox is finally clean (before messages stayed around forever). mentally i also treat the incoming voices differently, knowing this is the only chance i will have to hear them. what if we included a 'recover voices from previous visit'? an inbox where things disappear after being listened to, that will create different type of communications. i am not sure if it will be better or worse, but to experiment is good. if it does not work well, then we can return to a more traditional inbox.
3) marketing
we plan to promote the vorail facebook page, will start marketing to invite more users to the platform. can we include one of your public ask-all replies on the vorail facebook page?

thanks,
tom