Sunday, October 16, 2016

What I'm up to at the moment

Hmm, it's been a while since my last post, so I thought that I should give you a short update on what I did in the last couple of months and what my plans are for the near future.

I finished working on Keep Streak. It's a habit tracking app that helps you do certain things regularly (like excercise or meditate). It's not my own app. I got hired to do it on Upwork. I collaborated with Eetion, the project owner, for two years, incrementally adding features to the original idea and then pausing the work for a couple of months. I have to say that I quite enjoyed the process, but I'm also happy that it finally got published. Keep Streak isn't extremely popular right now, but the app is quite well-thought-out and I recommend you take a look at it - perhaps it's something you'd like to use.

Other than freelance stuff, I also updated my metro apps: Milan Metro and Rome Metro. I removed their paid versions and added in-app payments instead, so that people can still remove ads. This way there aren't two separate versions of the app in the Play Store. I added search, so you can easily look for stops. I implemented App Invites, so people can invite their friends to use the app via sms or email. I tweaked the ads and I started using Facebook Audience Network to maximize my revenue. I added Google Analytics and Firebase Analytics to be able to understand the users' behavior. Finally, I fixed some small bugs that were reported on Fabric (former Crashlytics).
All in all, the apps' installs haven't increased much, because there's an official app for Milan now, and the app for Rome was never very popular (I still have no idea why). I learned a lot while working on the updates though, so I don't consider this time to be wasted. I still have hopes that the installs will go up to a bigger figure. In fact, after a slight bump, they keep rising slowly but steadily.

Oh, I forgot to mention, the metro apps have new material icons now too. I already published the one for Rome and I'm doing an A/B test for the one for Milan. Here's what they look like now.

So the plan for the rest of the year is to finish updating the metro apps, so they can be left alone for some time. To be more specific, I'd like to:
  • fix in-app-payments related bugs
  • reward users for inviting friends (if it's even possible)
  • finish experimenting with the icons
  • think about new features that could be added (like animations)
After I'm done with it, I want to play around with my Facebook gallery apps e.g. Banksy. They need a general update of SDKs and libraries. There are new features that I want to add as well, like sharing images and screen transitions. I was thinking that I could experiment a bit with Retrofit 2, RxJava and Kotlin in the meantime.

As to my interview series, I recently found out that the author of Hook and klocki is a friend of a friend, so perhaps I can get him to answer a couple of questions for me. I'm really excited to meet the guy. An additional fun fact about him is that he rents electric skateboards in my city (Poznań) now. Some of my work mates already went to try them.

Neither the blog nor me are dead, so stay tuned for the next posts and updates. See you in a bit.


  1. Nice! Keep up the good work man. One of my favorite non-bs blogs.

    1. Thanks! It really means a lot to me. I though my mum was the only one reading the posts :P But more seriously, I'm glad someone finds my random musings interesting. If you have any suggestions regarding the content or my apps, please let me know. From my side, I'll do my best to write a post at least every 3-4 weeks.

  2. I didn't know the creator of Hook is from Poland! I bought both games on Steam and loved them, particularly Hook.

    1. I'm in the process of playing Hook on my phone and I'll install klocki straight after I'm done with it.

      P.S. You should come visit me sometime :P