Vodafone Update app for iPhone

A while back, Widgetlabs (makers of Vodafone’s Update app for iPhone) was kind enough to ask about my complaints regarding the Vodafone Update app.

Having setup version 2.0 of the app to connect to my Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts, here’s a quick list of my main impressions, in no particular order:

Problems

  • Poor timeline management, with several issues:
    • Entries getting frequently out of chronological order, with the most recent ones appended after 1 month old entries, for example.
    • Getting thrown to the top of the timeline when returning from the details of an item, instead of staying where we left off.
    • Different update speeds per network give the impression that no updates exist for a certain period of time, only to have it “magically” appear after you’ve already scrolled past that point.

    These issues showed up more often when coming back to the timeline from the details of an old update, reached after scrolling back “in time” (e.g. to 1 month old entries).

  • Date & time formats do not follow the regional format settings. (AM/PM? Please!)
  • On Facebook updates, content shared without a custom comment appear as “no text posted“ making it impossible to discern from the timeline what it is about.

Annoyances

  • Can’t go to the next/previous update when in details mode! Having to get back to the timeline only to check the next item is very cumbersome. (not to mention when the problems with the timeline quick in, as mentioned above)
  • On Twitter, there is no easy way to see a user’s mentions from the user’s profile. (only option is to do a manual search?)
  • The app supports multiple networks but not multiple accounts for the same network?!? (this is just bizarre and, in my opinion, shortsighted!)
  • We can only see the user’s profile on Twitter?! What about the other networks?
  • On Facebook, updates from apps appear without identifying which “friend” posted them.

Improvements? Nice to have?

  • Add a way to see a user’s favorites on Twitter.
  • Add the ability to hide app notices from the timeline on Facebook.
  • Twitter profile counts (followers, following, etc) should be clickable to see a detailed list.
  • Allow to flag/star/favorite directly from the timeline. (relates to my personal usage, since I often “flag for later” to check back when I have more time)
  • When starting the app, go back to where the user left off. (very useful for when incoming phone calls come in)

These are only the main ones I’ve noticed after a couple hours of using the app but bear in mind that with both Facebook and Linkedin having their own iPhone applications and Tweetie being the best-seller app for Twitter, the expectations for accessing these networks through an app are quite high!