On the verge of another Apple Event (Woo!) uTime 5.2 is now available on the Mac App Store and iOS App Store.
uTime 5.2 brings a host of new features such as % of time counting (the circle now can remember what state it was at instead of constantly resetting).
uTime 5.2 also brings the iOS 14 widget to macOS on computers that will be running macOS Big Sur.
The official change-log:
Added WidgetKit to macOS 11 Big Sur! This will work in the same way the iOS 14 widget will: putting the closest timer in approximate time up to 15 minutes on your sidebar. Within 15 minutes a more precise timer will run!
MacOS Big Sur Support: uTime 5 on macOS has been compiled for BigSur!
% Of change: previously when changing timers the circular bar would reset its status. No longer! With percentage of time and our new data set we can calculate percentage of time passed from creation. This means the circular timer will not start at 0 but at how much time has actually passed from creation to now! Hooray!
Added a button in modify timer that will allow you to set the selected date to the current date and time.
Fixed a bug where selecting a timer would turn the action button title to done but not the state.
Fixed a bug on Mac and iPad where the wrong timer would get deleted when selecting the last one in the list.
Fixed a bug on Mac and iPad where the Timer would be deselected when scrolling a large list of timers but would stay marked deleted.
Small improvements to timer list screen on iPhone.
After over a year of hard work and dedication I am so happy I can finally introduce the next major update to uTime: uTime 5. Starting a year ago the entire backend structure has been redone, iOS 14 specific features, SwiftUI, CloudKit, and more make up just part of this massive update. While I will post the changelog below I want to highlight some of the more major features of this release.
A New Backend
uTime’s original back end was made when I was a freshman starting college and has stuck around ever since (well until now). It was very sloppy but migrating it was not really possible in the way I wanted to do it until iOS 13 allowed for CoreData (saved data) to syncronize into iCloud without a lot of extra work. This means the data you put into uTime automatically gets saved and transfered to iCloud (or if you don’t have iCloud it will stay on device). By moving uTime’s data to a database instead of my own system of functions (what a mess), I can push updates even faster that has to do with timers and most importantly – less bugs. The downside to this is anything before iOS 13 (and macOS Catalina) does not work with this structure so uTime 5 has to be on iOS 13 (and 14 now) to run. Another downside is all previous versions will not sync data after transfering. If you choose not to upgrade to uTime 5 syncing will still work as expected. Version 5 needs other app versions to be on 5 to sync your data.
First Time Setup
Something new that has not been done before is first time setup. First time setup will open when you first open uTime 5 and in the background migrate your old data to the new dataset that uTime will use from now on. While this is happening you can also scroll through and see some new features of the app. After the first setup you will not see these screens again.
A New Modification Screen
The new modification screen is simply incredible. It allows you to select the date from a calendar instead of scrolling through. The time is right below so you can set it to the exact time of your event.
iOS 14 Widget
With iOS 14 Apple has started allowing widgets to be on the homescreen of the iPhone. I am so happy to say uTime 5 has a widget for iOS 14 ready to be on the homescreen of your iPhone (or sidebar of your iPad). The iOS 14 widget updates every 5 minutes (or when you open the app, this is Apple’s limit not mine) and will show you the time to the closest timer that has time left. For iOS 13 friends the Today widget still exists and can be used to cycle through.
One of the big new features within uTime 5 is feedback submission in app. Using your iCloud account within any screen in app, you can now shake your device (or hit command+F on macOS) to bring up a feedback form. From here you can submit a bug or just general feedback in the app. What is important to know: I cannot see any personal data even though you need to be signed into iCloud (because Apple does not allow me to write to CloudKit without authentication). The only information I can see is what you provide to me.
Those are just some of the major features coming with uTime 5. Others include the Info screen being completely redone, theme improvements, and much more. uTime 5 is the biggest release I have ever done as a developer and I am so excited for you all to use it. To see the entire changelog you can open the info section of the app or find it below.
A New Data Set: uTime 5 uses an entirely new data set. This new set lives in iCloud just like the last but allows for more features to be developed much much quicker. If you do not use iCloud then the data will live on your device just like before. With this change it is important to note that uTime 4 cannot sync with this set so if you want to have continuity between devices both will need uTime 5 to sync. This also means uTime 3 on desktop will not be able to sync with uTime 5 for macOS or iOS.
iOS 14 Widget – You can now have uTime on the home-screen of your device! Just add the widget by activating jiggle mode. The iOS 14 widget will show the aproximate time you have left to your closest expiring timer!
Modify Timer Screen – The modify timer screen has been COMPLETELY redone. You will now be able to choose dates with a calendar and then the time with a date picker for a much better experience than just one scroller. (Not available on iPhone SE Gen 1 running iOS 13)
Feedback Screen – You can now submit feedback right through the app: Simply shake your iPhone or iPad to submit either a bug report or generic feedback in the app! Mac users can use the menu option to access on home screen! Please make sure you are signed into iCloud to use!
Info Screen – Info screen has been completely re-written in SwiftUI. This makes for a more consistent experience throughout all devices along with being able to add and change things quicker for future updates.
Theme improvements: The operating system will now fully take care of dark/light theme. This also allows it when you switch themes in control center the app will fully change without the need to restart.
First time setup: Upon entry you will be welcomed with a new set of screens while we transfer your data. This will explain new features!
– New Icon: A new version means a new icon! This update is a little pinkish!
– Added support for iOS 14.
– iOS 13 Dependent: uTime 5 is only available for iOS 13 and onwards.
– Changed checkmark image for selecting timers on iPhone.
– Fixed an issue on iPad where the color would not return to normal after deselecting a timer.
– Fixed an issue where the launch screen would present an oversized logo image.
– Fixed an issue where the launch screen would present no image at all…
Fixed an issue on iPhone SE (Gen 1) where the image on modify timer wouldn’t completely fill the view.
A new round of uTime 4.4.1 is now out. Called the spring cleaning update this includes:
Added a cancel button to the iPad/Mac modify Window. This will allow you to discard any changes made to a timer while using iPadOS or macOS.
Timer Table For iPhone: The table on iOS 13 will now show a gray color + checkmark to let you know it has been selected. For iOS 12 and earlier it will just be a gray color. This is a fix for checkmarks dissapearing in a long list.
Timer Table for iPad/Mac: When in edit mode and selecting a timer, the color will change to gray to let you know that it has been selected. This fixes disapearing checkmarks and text being cutoff by the mark for a cleaner approach.
Made it so the app now dynamically knows what version it’s running. This means there is less confusion on what version you actually have installed.
Fixed a bug where checkmarks would disappear if a large list is present and the user scrolls.
Cleaned up various parts of the app to make file size slightly smaller and also allow for a better running experience
uTime 4.2 is now available on the App Store for both macOS and iOS. uTime 4.2 has a lot of background changes and some front end ones too!
Here is the official change log:
When making a new timer on iPad/Mac, you will now be brought right to the modify screen to edit your newly created timer.
Fixed Issue with app crashing on launch after a background sync with iCloud
Behind the scenes update to handle app information: This will make less network calls and lead to less human error on update information
On iOS 13 when swiping down and changes have been made an action sheet will now ask you what you want to do with the changes. Saving will save your changes, discard will discard your changes, and Cancel will keep you in the modification screen.
Slide to delete a timer is back! Slide on a timer to delete it from the list!
Along with this uTime 3.1 is available for Mac bringing changes to the backend information and a new delete button as the backspace key does not work on some OS X versions.
With the power of macOS Catalina and Catalyst framework uTime comes to the mac with all the same functionality as the iOS version! This also means whenever there is an update to uTime for iOS there will be the same update with the same (and more) features for macOS.
However, making a Catalyst app is a problem because it will only work with macOS Catalina which drops 32 bit support which is used with many legacy applications…
The way I decided to counter this is to leave uTime for macOS (Version 3) on the app store for legacy software users. However, there will not be feature updates for uTime macOS Version 3.
So why the change? A lot of reasons but the main one is continuity: being able to develop features once and then have it work accross all Apple platforms means more feature updates come quicker which is a big win.
After a summer of developing I am happy to announce uTime 4 is now available to download on the app store. uTime 4 brings numerous improvements including Split View for iPad (FINALLY) and iOS 13 Support!
The home screen for uTime 4 has a new addition: a circular ring. The circular ring will fill up from the most recent load time till your event occurs. It is a fun way to visualize how much time is left until your event. This is just one of the many feature additions and improvements in uTime 4
Here is the official changelog for uTime 4:
4: Big Changes
Slide Menu: Now instead of hitting timers and going to a different view the list of timers will just slide in, and by swipping right they will also appear
Search is no longer hidden: instead of having to pull down to get to the search bar it will always be present and ready to use
Finally you are able to use uTime in Slide Over and Split View multitasking
-Using Slide Over and certain instances of Split View will bring in the iPhone interface for a better experience.
Added an animation for timers (iPhone 6 and up): The circle! The circle animates based on how much time is left from when you select the timer. It will fill and say solid white when time is done.
-Layout Improvements: uTime will work better with all types of screens due to updates on constraints.
iOS 13 Dark Mode: For devices running iOS 13 the slider to toggle has been removed. iOS 13’s dark mode setting is reflected within uTime.
Other iOS 13 Goodies: uTime works with sliding views now! Most notably settings (and for iPhone Modifications!). Grab the top of the view and dismiss them. (13+ Only)
Removed custom WebBrowser with Safari’s default
-New version means a new icon!
uTime 4 is on the App Store now as a free update. Happy Downloading!
With about less than a week to go to WWDC I have made uTime 3.4 available on the app store. 3.4 officially marks the end of the transition of uTime to swift as now every feature has been migrated into Apple’s swift language.
uTime 3.4 brings back the today widget allowing you to see your timers all within the notification today view, or by 3D touching the uTime icon on your home-screen. Every time you open the main app or make a change the widget will update manually or will also update in the background to stay up to date. However with the background updates it is sporadically timed (Apple’s policy not mine) so you may want to open the app if you want it up to date at specific times.
Here is the official change-log:
3.4 Return of The Widget:
The today widget is back and redesigned
Access the today widget in Notification Center or with supporting iOS devices: 3D touch the uTime icon!
Today widget will stay up to date in the background but will manually refresh with you entering the app
An update a year in the making: uSurf 6 is now available. uSurf 5 got to be so hard to maintain and fix that I had to rewrite it from scratch but by doing that there are a lot of improvements. The official change-log:
6.0 The Big One:
– A total rewrite: The app has been completely rewritten to be better optimized!
– WebKit: With WebKit features such as swipe navigation have been implemented
– ProgressBar: See how far the page is loaded with a new progress bar on the top of the webview.
– iPhone X Support: uSurf now supports iPhone X Style Devices
– iPad Pro Support: uSurf now supports iPad Pro (3rd Generation Devices)
– iPad: No more toolbar! Everything is now in the navigation bar!
– iPad: Portrait Split Screen!
– There are new icons all throughout the app!
– Long pressing the add button will allow you to add a bookmark, just pressing it will add a tab…
– Option to clear all history!
– Searching: You can now search through your history, tabs, and bookmarks!
– Better version information: A lot less mess ups when it comes to consistency with information
– Legacy: uSurf still works with legacy devices (going as far back as iOS 9)
– Ad Banners: To try and make a little bit of cash on the side I implemented a single ad banner on the bottom of the settings page. That’s it.
uSurf 6 switches from using UIWebView to WebKit. This brings faster browsing and streamlined navigation. It also allows for a progress bar to determine how much of the page is left to load.
There is also a lot of efficiency upgrades in terms of memory and processing power which is good on devices running legacy versions of iOS.
The final thing… Ads. uSurf has been free for a number of years along with other applications of the uApps Suite. Development of these apps take a lot of time and are not free so I am trying to get a mere couple of cents off of people using them. Therefor, I added an ad banner in the info section of uSurf… That’s all there is going to be for now.
For those of you waiting for this update I appreciate your patience while I got this update ready (took over a year). The redone code structure makes it easier to push updates both feature wise and functionality wise.
Happy 2019!!! What a better way to roll into the New Year than to have a brand new
update to uTime. 3.3 is very packed introducing a Siri shortcut to tell you how close your closest firing timer is. Along with that, there is a new layout for 4-inch devices.
uTime 3.3 even though packing features exclusive to iOS 12 still supports iOS 11 and up the Siri button will not appear though in either the 4 inch or above version.
With that, the new UI for those models is pictured below for those of you still running the iPhone 5s or SE.
Siri shortcuts were very new for me so there are changes to be made to it and more shortcuts to come. All you have to do is add the shortcut on your iPad or iPhone and it will carry to all devices that support Siri shortcuts (iPhone, iPad, HomePod, Apple Watch have been tested).
Here is the official change log:
Happy New Year!!! A ton of changes are here to make uTime even better for 2019!
-Siri Intents: Now you can have Siri tell you how much time you have left towards your most recent timer!
Add Siri support and find out how much time you have left on your Apple Watch perhaps.
Changed the layout for iPhone 5 devices: Linear!
Background refresh: uTime will refresh timers every so often in the background to keep you up to date across devices
As it starts to become Christmas in my part of the world I would like to take a minute to say thank you to everyone who has used something I have developed over 2018.
My hope is that even though there are some bugs along the way that the applications I make and post bring some joy or make your life a little bit easier in some fashion so I would like to say thank you.
As of right now all apps and updates for 2018 are finished! There will not be a new update for any uApps application until early 2019 with big things left to come…
With that said a big piece of the uApps puzzle was absent this year: uSurf. uSurf got to be developmentally challenging to make progress moving forward so I decided I was going to completely re-design and recode the entire thing using swift and webkit. While there are still a lot of things to be developed for uSurf 6 because it is the holidays here is a sneak peak of the new UI you will see when launching uSurf 6:
So exciting things are coming in terms of uSurf, uTime, and something else completely new! However, they take time and I am a busy college student about to graduate so a lot of these projects are done in free time so again thank you for bearing with me.
Again thank you and I hope everyone has a terrific holiday and a happy new year!