WTD: iOS 6 Commuting App

With all the criticism around iOS 6 maps, and specifically the outsourcing of transit data to routing apps, I think there is an opportunity to innovate on transit in iOS. While the iOS Google Maps app was great for navigating locations that you aren’t that familiar - what if there was more attention paid to the transit that you use on a regular basis in your daily commute? Here’s a quick sketch:

iOS 6 Transit Sketch

For example, I always take the same bus, train, or ferry everyday. There may be an occasional day when I stay late at work and take a specific bus to get home. I want quick access to those same bus lines without having to go lookup a timetable.

I’m envisioning the new Passbook experience repurposed for transit. You save common routes, busses, or even combinations - the app loads up and checks your location and shows you the relevant ones. It won’t show you the bus that you take to get to work, because it knows you are at work. It then tells you the bus number, time until departure, and where you need to go to grab it. Travelbook?

StoryAmp gets a write-up in Billboard magazine and features the radio player I designed.

StoryAmp gets a write-up in Billboard magazine and features the radio player I designed.

I’m very happy to add the Cause.It mobile app to my portfolio and support the launch of the product. The app uses the Groupon model for good — listing volunteer activities and local offers that benefit charities. They are rolling out initially in Indianapolis and Austin as a launch board to other cities. The app is available now in the iTunes app store and you can read more on the Cause.it web site.

I’m very happy to add the Cause.It mobile app to my portfolio and support the launch of the product. The app uses the Groupon model for good — listing volunteer activities and local offers that benefit charities. They are rolling out initially in Indianapolis and Austin as a launch board to other cities. The app is available now in the iTunes app store and you can read more on the Cause.it web site.

Downcast Manages Podcasts Perfectly on iOS

Downcast for iPhone & iPad makes consuming podcasts easy and manageable. Search, subscribe, and let Downcast automatically download new episodes, download selectively, or stream them. It keeps track of where you left of on an episode regardless of whether it’s downloaded or streamed.

Apple is partially responsible for making podcasting a success by including them in the iTunes store and building podcast syncing into iTunes. The features in iTunes for iOS for podcasting are currently stripped down. In iOS 5 audio and video podcasts are split between two apps. These apps only hold your podcasts and don’t tell you if there are new episodes. Then you have to switch between apps twice to download and play a new episode.

Apple is likely prioritizing development on iTunes for paying content, as they should, and I’m grateful for their support of podcasting. Downcast solves these issues with a highly customizable podcast app.

#ipad 

Push Notifications Are Going To Be Hot, Again

The release of iOS 5 will bring attention back to push notifications by giving a place to consume them on both the lock screen and the pull down notification center. As I’ve used iOS 5 over the course of 3 months I’ve built a new appreciation for utilizing push notifications and I’m more likely to turn them on for more apps.

With the changes coming in iOS 5 I predict that we’ll see more people getting comfortable with app notifications and more apps starting to offer them.

Impromptu Gathering: A Concept for a Pre-Check In Option

After using location based check-in services I have wondered why there isn’t a simple method to get people together before you arrive to a location. I want a method to invite friends to get together for a drink today after work, go bowling, or go for a hike tomorrow afternoon. This type of activity is not an event  it’s an impromptu gathering and it’s much more casual. I think it would be perfect for Facebook and here’s a concept for how it would work:

  1. Create a new gathering from the News Feed.
  2. Set the location, date, time, and tag anyone that you want to be notified. You are limited to creating gatherings within the next two days.
  3. When you post the gathering anyone tagged will see it in their News Feed and get a notification according to their settings.
  4. There is no need to respond to the gathering to say you are attending. You can comment on the gathering and everyone else that is tagged can read other comments.
  5. Show up and have a drink!

Snapshot

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