TPE 3.2 for iOS released today

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TPE 3.2 for iOS screenshots

We’re pleased to announce the release today of TPE 3.2 for iOS.

The new update includes a number of improvements and some exciting additional features.

Improvements

  • Map buttons can be hidden on iPhone to increase usable map area
  • New setting to control whether to use Satellite or Hybrid maps (you may prefer Satellite if the map labels obsure your shooting location)
  • Locations can now be marked as favorites
  • Your favorite locations are shown on the map by default (you can disable this via settings)

These changes are designed to improve the utility of the app.

Map buttons

For users on smaller screened devices (3.5” and 4”, i.e. iPhone 4S and iPhone 5), the ability to hide the map controls will provide a useful increase in usable map area for those times when you need to focus your attention on geographic matters.

Satellite maps

In a similar vein, the option to use plain satellite maps, instead of hybrid maps where map labels may obscure landscape features, means you now have a mechanism to clear the way and focus in on the satellite imagery. This option is available for both Apple and Google maps: you may find that one provider has better satellite imagery than another in certain locations – if you don’t like what you see, it’s worth switching over to see the alternative. Go to the TPE Settings page to change map provider.

Locations

Firstly, we overhauled the locations screen to use Apple’s latest SearchController API, which provides better stability and performance and is much simpler under the hood.

Secondly, we added the ability to mark any location as a ‘favourite’. A few users have asked for the option to display saved locations on the map at all times. However, the downside with that approach is that you can end up with hundreds of map markers as your location list grows.

Using favourites offers a middle ground that lets you decide which locations are most important to you, and mark them as favourites. All favourite locations are permanently displayed as a star icon on the map. You can tap on the favourite location marker on the map and then select the button in the popup info window to set the red pin directly to that location. And, if geodetics is enabled, you’ll be prompted to choose whether to move the red or grey pin.

Additional features

Location synch is here for iOS

We’ve added an option to let you synchronise your saved locations between TPE for iOS and the TPE Desktop Web App.

We know many of you like to plan your shoots at home on desktop or iPad, and then have the relevant information at hand when you’re on the road.

Location Synch makes it easier than ever to do just that. Rather than manually importing, exporting and managing locations via KML, you can synchronise at the touch of a button between all your devices running TPE for iOS and any instances of the TPE Desktop Web App.

To use this feature you sign up for a free Crookneck Photo Apps account. What’s Crookneck? That’s us, the makers of TPE. Why an account? When we store your saved locations during synchronization, we need a way of associating that location to you, its creator. A user account is the easiest way of establishing that association.

Location Synch is offered with a free 90-day trial. Thereafter 12-month subscriptions to this feature will cost $0.99 (in the US).

Why isn’t it free?

We decided against using solutions like iCloud (Apple only) and Dropbox (they actually deprecated their per-record synch API earlier this year) in order to ensure we could offer this feature across all our supported platforms. (That’s right: we expect to bring it to Android later this year.)

In building and operating our own platform there are ongoing monthly costs to keep it running, in addition to the development and maintenance efforts. These costs include application hosting, cloud database instances, monitoring services, SSL certificate costs etc.

We want this to be a sustainable feature, so we’re asking a modest subscription fee to ensure that these costs are covered. For the cost of 1/3 of a single cup of coffee you get a yearly subscription to synch your TPE locations across all your iOS devices and TPE web app versions.

A few other changes

  • The Synch button has been added to on the locations page; the edit button has been removed. To edit, first choose a location in the list. When selected, the edit button is displayed on the right (the one with the pencil). To delete a location, go back to the locations list and simply swipe a location to the left and choose Delete (just as you would with the iOS Mail app)
  • The button to send the grey pin to a saved location now only appears if geodetics is already enabled. To enable geodetics go back to the map, choose the grey geodetics button on the right of the map. Back in the locations screen the grey pin is now displayed as a button in the location cell
  • Amongst various bug fixes, one notable fix is that it is now much harder to lose the grey pin, which did have a habit of zooming off screen when positioned from a saved location
  • We have updated to the latest Google Maps SDK. Most importantly this means that terrain maps zoom in much further. Yay!

We hope you enjoy the new updates. We have at least two more major updates coming this summer with more new features, so look out for those!