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Thoughts on mobile app development.

The Benefits of Feedback

One of the nice things about being an iOS developer is that I am constantly putting my work in front of tens of millions of people. With an audience that large, it would be foolish to think I could create something that would please everybody. The really great thing though is that with such a large audience, chances are that any well made app will make at least a few people happy. Sometimes the response can be quite surprising, and way more people are interested than I would have guessed. This is the case with MyMoodTracker.

MyMoodTracker started off as a simple way of keeping track of how you were feeling. Version 1.0 was quite limited, only letting you record how you felt once per day. Of course there were some other features (eg. charts), but the crux of the application was monitoring how you felt from day to day – hence the name MyMoodTracker. This was obviously something people had been craving for, as the immediate response was very positive. Pretty soon the feature requests started rolling in, which to me is a great sign that people like the app – if they don’t, they’re just going to move on to something else. Making a feature request takes time and effort, and is something people only do if they think it will make a difference.

I really feel that the app has now reached a point where it’s a good, solid way of tracking your emotional state. Numerous people have commented on how it has made their sessions with their doctor so much more useful. The current version has a very strong 4.5-5 star average. You’d think that the feature requests would have slowed down by now, but in fact they are increasing. Often I am receiving not just short emails, but page-long discussions of what people like about the app, how it could be improved, and so on. As long as I keep listening to the feedback, it’s no longer my application – it’s our application. Developing is so much easier when you have a clear picture of what needs to be done, instead of guessing what people want.

So what does the future hold? Version 2.0 is going to be a big release, and it will be released sometime around the middle of September. Medication tracking and improvements to sleep tracking are the main features, but there’s also many improvements to the UI and the online backup system. Version 2.1 is already in the works as well, with the option to track energy levels, exercise, and a few other things I’m going to keep secret for now.

If you haven’t yet given MyMoodTracker a go, you can very soon do so for free. MyMoodTrackerLite should be in the AppStore within a couple of days, and offers the same great functionality. Give it a go, see what you think, then send me some feedback – after all, one of the great joys of being a user is seeing your feature implemented.

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