Author Topic: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll  (Read 7063 times)

Danneaux

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Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« on: February 28, 2013, 09:28:05 PM »
Hi All!

The use of mobile platforms (i.e. smartphones and tablets powered by Apple or Android) to access online content is increasingly popular.

There are Forum plug-ins (mods) and user-purchasable apps that rearrange and optimize content for display on the small screens these devices employ. The pages are not only easier to view, operations like photo-attachment uploads are made easier. One such mod/app is Tapatalk, proposed and discussed here: http://www.thorncycles.co.uk/forums/index.php?topic=5995.0

While it looks like a boon for mobile users with no change for computer users, there are some things on the admin end that need careful consideration. Part of that consideration involves determining demand and likely usage to weigh against other concerns, hence the above poll.

Please take a second to kindly register your preference with a vote. I realize few members regularly participate by posting, but I hope even the "quiet ones" will take a moment to register their vote anonymously. 1 vote per, no changes, viewable results before voting. I'll run the poll for two weeks to get a rough idea of present demand. As a reminder, features like poll voting are only available to members; sorry, guests.

Thanks and best,

Dan.

George Hetrick

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2013, 02:37:20 AM »
I said "I want", but not hugely.

I access from iPad and iPhone as well as a laptop. The normal web interface is fine on the iPad, but not so hot on the iPhone. bikeforums.net uses vBulletin, and that works fine for iPhone, so there be a similar skinning that works with SMF. I know bikeforums.net decided against opening up to Tapatalk, citing some security issues.

Danneaux

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2013, 02:43:16 AM »
Thanks very much, George; I'm continuing my investigations, and your observations are helpful!

Best,

Dan.

John Saxby

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2013, 01:24:24 AM »
Thanks, Dan. I did a "N/A" 'cos I use my laptop--my main mobile devices are 2-wheelers...'cept for the one that glides silently through still (most of the time) waters.

Cheers,

John (in Rio de Janeiro, for my sins)

Danneaux

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2013, 02:14:34 AM »
Quote
...my main mobile devices are 2-wheelers...'cept for the one that glides silently through still (most of the time) waters...
'Made my day with that one, John!  ;D
Quote
...in Rio de Janeiro...
...and thinking of us!

Take care, and enjoy to the fullest, John; you're deserving.

All the best,

Dan. (...who thinks the Forum has addictive properties for most of us)

E-wan

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2013, 05:37:42 PM »
Another big advantage of a mobile app is it makes it much easier to post photos straight from your phone or tablet.

eg I've taken several pics of modifying a set of dogwood designs pogies which cover my handlebars to allow the use of rohloff shifter cables, showing where to cut sow etc, jest haven’t had tome to post them yet but would be far easier form a mobile app.

http://allseasonscyclist.com/2012/02/13/bike-poagies-by-dogwood-designs/

Ewan

honesty

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2013, 06:21:47 PM »
The one problem with taptalk as I've seen it on other fora is it asks you if you want to use it every time.. I want to say no once.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 11:16:48 AM by honesty »

E-wan

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2013, 10:26:12 AM »
I wasn't specifically intending to promote tapatalk and it may be that antoher forum app would be better but its just the only one I had come across.

Ewan

Andre Jute

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2013, 12:33:28 PM »
I voted yes for Tapatalk, because I have an iPad.

But a more generic thing, very stripped down text-only, would be WAP. I would miss the photographs though; one of the best features of this forum is the liberal use of photographs by all the members. It may be that WAP's time has come and gone.

I haven't used either but would like to read the forum on the iPad kept on my exercise machine. And I'm thinking about replacing my Android smartphone, which has niggling problems and isn't reliable, with an iPhone, so I might want to read the forum when I take a break in the middle of a ride. For that some sort of software will definitely be required.

Andre

Danneaux

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2013, 08:21:03 PM »
Hi All!

I have not forgotten this request. A couple weeks have passed and the poll has been run, and the participation was pretty small -- out of 1829 total members, only 217 viewed the topic, only 22 voted at all, and of those, only 5 expressed an intense interest in having Tapatalk or a similar mobile-enhancement mod added to the Forum.

Ideally, even if it benefited access and use for just a single person, I'd be inclined to add it, but there are some other issues on the Forum administration side that make me want to hold off for just a bit and see if things improve in the next version of Tapatalk.

For one thing, each add-on has the potential to decrease the Forum's security and stability. I've spent the last couple weeks researching things pretty carefully from the admin side, and it appears many of Tapatalk's problems are in the past; each new version is more stable and more secure. While Tapatalk's support and responsiveness has not been stellar in the past, they're improving on that end as well.

One of the problems is that some interim versions of Tapatalk can still effectively hamper or break Forum access until corrected versions can be issued. Meanwhile, the problems can affect usability at the Forum end of things, necessitating removal and reinstallation of Tapatalk with every update.

There are some usability issues as well.

One present issue is that if later-generation iPhone users wish to decline Tapatalk, they have to do so manually each time unless they're familiar with their phone's settings, and many aren't. This has resulted in complaints and increased workloads for Admins who find themselves becoming unwitting tech-supporters for Tapatalk/Apple to ensure Forum access. I've already written a settings guide I could employ if I installed Tapatalk, but at this point, I'd like to wait and see what the next generation of Tapatalk brings in terms of smoothing some remaining issues with Forums powered by SMF. Already, v.2.x has shown a vast improvement, and it appears that further improvements by mid-summer will make for smoother play between Tapatalk and SMF.

The problems aren't so much with the App end as they are with the Forum mod itself and issues surrounding the administration of it.

So, at present, I'm going to defer installation, but keep a close and continued eye on developments and I will advise as things progress. This isn't a "no", just a "not quite yet", so those hoping for Tapatalk should watch this space for further developments. I'll keep abreast of things, invite you to do so and share as well, and we'll revisit the request in about four months and see what's happening. Of course, any alternative apps/mods are welcome for consideration as well, so if you hear of a likely candidate, please share.

Best,

Dan. (...who thinks it is a good idea, with a few remaining kinks to work out before adoption here)

Andre Jute

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Re: Forumwide call: Tapatalk Forum mod/mobile app poll
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2013, 10:47:53 PM »
Thank you for the tremendous amount of work you've put in, Dan. Frankly, my impression,as one of the five who would like to try Tapatalk, was that no one was rortingly enthusiastic, or desperate to have it. Certainly noone made it a make or break condition of membership here. It may be that there is not enough real interest to justify further expenditure of your time, especially with your big tour coming up in the summer. Speaking for myself, I'll take your goodwill as read should different hardware or lifestyle changes absolutely require me to have Tapatalk or an equivalent, and be happy to leave it there for good, or until the occasion arises.

Andre Jute