timeline for forms in android

Discuss plans for a future version of HanDBase for the Google Android platform

Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby edwin2011 » Mon Jun 13, 2011 2:06 am

This is a tough one. Sinc i'm a business owner myself i can partly understand the choices that are made.
When the palm os died (not talking about webOS) i was wondering what impact that would have on the developers for all kind of handy tools and here's the confimation. Thank's for your open answer on this and yes i think i can fill in the A,B etc.

But since there's no palm road back anymore i have to make a choice wich platform has the most potential in it.
I can llive with a app that is in pre-stages but has a good sync and basic funtion's.
So that's why i posted the question because form's just give me a view within a view. I use the view to quickly select a customer and with the form's a can easly group the information i need from that customer.

So next step could be purchasing an android phone & handbase to experiment.

One thing one of the posters worried me is his remark about stablility of the database and the encrytion. An instable database with loss of data would be a disaster, so please confirm that that is no issue. the same in regards to the encryption option.

btw i agree that first priority is making money to survive, second is fix the quick fixes, third is let the android version grow. better slow than not at all.
No grow at all is what killed the palm company so please be transparent about the furure plan's of all version's of handbase. In the short run transperancy looks like it will cost money but in the long run you will win.

regards,

edwin
*** edwin ***
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby curtterp » Mon Jun 13, 2011 5:19 am

I have been using HanDBase for many years, from Palm to Windows Mobile 2003 to Android on my Droid X.

I have had HanDBase on my X since it first came out. I have not had any data corruption/loss during that time.

I have had a couple of force closes, very few and far between. This only happens when I work with HanDBase, go to another app or two or three, then go back to HanDBase. It is not a consistent force close.

Dave has explained it in another thread. When the memory starts to get full, the OS starts to close older views. Unfortunately, when it closes an older view within HanDBase, it causes issues and force closes because each view is Dependant on the data from the previous view.

My solution is to back out of the databases that I am in using the back button. That way, if the OS closes down the first view of HanDBase (database selection screen), then there is no problem and I do not see a force close.

Again, I have never lost a database/data yet

Just my experiences with HanDBase.
Have a good day

Curt
I am not a DDHSoftware employee, just a long time HanDBase user.... from Palm to Windows Mobile to Android, to iOS. Thanks to DDH, the database files transferred to each platform without a problem.
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby edwin2011 » Mon Jun 13, 2011 5:41 am

thanks for the explaination on that!
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby greyman56 » Mon Jun 13, 2011 6:19 am

I do not see any force closes or corruptions at all. Using a HTC Desire. Hope that statement does not put the mockers on me :)

I back out of databases and close them after each use.

I've learned that is best for all apps on Android. If there is an exit button or a way to close the app, then I always use it. Keeps memory free and everything running smoothly.
Cheers, Graham
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby dhaupert » Mon Jun 13, 2011 8:52 am

Regarding the instability, this is the number one priority for me. As Curt explained above, it's not that the program is unstable and crashes for no reason- it's a byproduct of a poor design decision by Google IMO, and unfortunately my early misunderstanding of this when designing HanDBase for Android. I do hope to solve this problem one way or another and plan on working on this for the very next update. It may unfortunately require a rewrite of a lot of code, so I'm hoping to avoid that, since it could bring unstability and many weeks of work that I'd rather spend on adding features!

I'll keep you all posted!
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby khodadad » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:15 am

Interesting thread. Thanks Dave for your open and clear explanation about your rationale regarding developing decisions.
The Android version is currently enough for me, although I would like more features (this is how we user ares :D ). I wait with interest for some summer surprises.
Regarding popularity, I think that one of the main problems with Handbase is that it is too powerful and quite generic. People has got accustomed to browsing an app in seconds and decide, many times only by the looks. May be some more eye candy would help or more simple sample databases (task lists and the like) and some "About this database" explaining it use.
What reminds me to rate and review the app in the market.... Done. :D

Just to close this point
I would like forms to, but some other features would be more immediately useful (like scrolling across the columns in list view – if that’s possible now I haven’t discovered it yet).


You can do this by swiping at the header row.
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby moneil » Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:14 pm

khodadad wrote:Interesting thread. Thanks Dave for your open and clear explanation about your rationale regarding developing decisions.
The Android version is currently enough for me, although I would like more features (this is how we user ares :D ). I wait with interest for some summer surprises.
Regarding popularity, I think that one of the main problems with Handbase is that it is too powerful and quite generic. People has got accustomed to browsing an app in seconds and decide, many times only by the looks. May be some more eye candy would help or more simple sample databases (task lists and the like) and some "About this database" explaining it use.
What reminds me to rate and review the app in the market.... Done. :D

Just to close this point
I would like forms to, but some other features would be more immediately useful (like scrolling across the columns in list view – if that’s possible now I haven’t discovered it yet).


You can do this by swiping at the header row.


Thanks for the tip! I had been trying to “finger scroll” from the middle of the screen as I would with some other apps and had thought this feature wasn’t available yet.

I defiantly concur with “The Android version is currently enough for me, although I would like more features … I wait with interest for some summer surprises.”

I also agree that the standard smart phone user is conditioned to “pre formatted task specific apps”. Back in my Palm OS days I had some particular purposes that I used (and greatly appreciated) HanDBase for but I still had dedicated “shopping list”, “financial accounts”, “password keeper”, etc. programs installed. When I switched to WebOS several of these programs either weren’t Classic certified or didn’t function well in the new environment (HanDBase fortunately worked well for me in Classic on the Palm Pre). There was either not a good WebOS alternative app or often there was a good app but it didn’t sync with a desktop equivalent, making it not so useful to me and HanDBase filled the gap. Having experience with a “store bought” product did give me some insight into how to set up a database for a particular purpose but I also greatly appreciated the ability to customize it to my needs and with the features I found useful. Also, as one who still misses the old “plug in the USB cable, touch ONE BUTTON ONE TIME and EVERYTHING synchronizes between the PC and the handheld” HotSync days, I appreciate that several applications can synchronize together rather than having to sync them each one at a time.

The “sample” databases included with HanDBase for Android show its potential. Perhaps a marketing spin could be “Get several useful applications together in one value priced package; Apps are customizable and can be synchronized with a desktop program (sold separately).”
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby Brian_Houghton » Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:35 pm

Hello Moneil,

Thanks for sharing your insights. You bring up a good point - a database manager can save the need for multiple programs, and essentially save a user money. Your marketing spin might be a very good idea worth exploring!
Kind Regards,
Brian Houghton, DDH Software
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby reinbeau » Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:31 am

dhaupert wrote:Hi Dan,

I certainly don't mind the discussion! I have actually shared on this topic in some other threads, so don't want to rehash too much of it. I'm honestly not sure why it is, but do know that it's not just a HanDBase problem. I shared an article on this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=19&t=1511

That explained it was very widespread- big developers puzzled why they don't sell many apps on Android. I personally think there are different user types on different platforms and that as a whole Android users are more gravitated to open source, free software than paid software. And there is no shortage of free software, which perpetuates the situation. Just like on iPhone the first apps were all low priced (0.99) and now there is little option to charge more than 9.99 for any type of software.

I'd love to hear more on this topic!


Android users are for the most part an extremely cheap bunch. I come from the Palm world, I have paid for every single piece of software I've ever used on any platform, by and large, on any Android forum, you will read over and over again people who refuse to pay for software. I think it's ridiculous, but what I've really come to understand is that the majority of Android users seem to be young men, who aren't using their phone for business, they're using it to play songs, post on Facebook, text, etc, and mod their screens. People like me, who are used to using the PDA aspects of a handheld are growing, but we don't dominate that market yet.

I do know that I'm reading in various Android forums that people won't buy HanDBase for Android because they can't use forms. That is keeping people away from purchasing, which gets into a huge circle. If you don't develop the forms, you won't get their business, if they don't buy the program, you won't develop forms. I'm not that anxious to get forms, I can wait - I do think you should revisit this decision, however.

curtterp wrote:Part of the problem that also exists is that you are starting to see iPhone/iTouch users come over to Android, buy HanDBase for Android, then are disappointed that it is not as polished as the iPhone/iTouch app. These people will also leave negative feedback instead of coming to the forum. They also do not understand that HanDBase for iOS has a 2 year headstart on HanDBase for Android. Also, people sometimes have unreal expectations of what HanDBase for Android should have been out of the gate. They expect to see an app as polished as their 13 year old cousin (Palm) or their two year old sibling (iOS). They also think that DDH is some huge company, not one programmer trying to make a decent living bring joy and sanity to the handheld world, by providing as easy to use Database that a person can use without having a DBA degree.


Yup, this is very true. They want the same bells and whistles on this platform as they were used to - and that is what is generating many of the bad comments.

DB100 wrote:I don't agree with the theory that Android users are somehow less inclined to pay for an app, and that's why HanDBase-For-Android is not selling. All you have to do is go into the Android Market and look up the HanDBase reviews. You will see an awfully lot of one and two star reviews. Legacy users who are migrating from an older platform like Palm or Windows Mobile, don't care about reviews. They have mature databases and they can tolerate the shortcomings confident that improvements will come. But new users are different. They read the reviews. And frankly, if I were a new user, there's no way I'd pay for an app that was getting one/two star reviews.


Again, we're back to the 'cheap' factor - I really do think that is a big problem for Android, and not just for HanDBase. I keep reading over and over again on this forum that 'cheapness' isn't the problem, it most definitely is. I see it on XDA Developers, people continually whining because a developer will go to a paid app finally, after figuring out there's a demand for his/her product, they start to charge a very nominal fee, (I really don't think 99¢ is too much to pay for a program), you'd think they were holding a gun to the user's head. :roll: I see it on Android Forums, I've seen it on every Android forum I've visited (I've visited many, but the two I mentioned are the ones I haunt), I've read it on Android blogs, etc. The typical Android user does not want to pay for software. But that isn't the typical HanDBase potential client. The kid with the cool custom-ROMed Android isn't your client base, but they're the ones who haunt the Market trying out this app or that, and who will leave negative comments (before they delete the app, within that 15 minute window).

CESD, of Datebk3/4/5/6 fame, isn't even bringing his Pimlical/A program to market until he works out the various (seemingly) platform specific bugs he runs into, he's got his program priced well for the other calendar apps, but it's such a complex program (as is HanDBase), he knows once it hits the market the typical customer, who isn't from the legacy Datebk era will have a real hard time dealing with the intricacies of the program - thus will garner very negative reviews.

I understand your reasoning, but I think you're caught in a huge Catch 22. To attract the die-hard HanDBase customers who have migrated from Palm to Android you need forms - I don't see any way around it.

edwin2011 wrote:This is a tough one. Sinc i'm a business owner myself i can partly understand the choices that are made.
When the palm os died (not talking about webOS) i was wondering what impact that would have on the developers for all kind of handy tools and here's the confimation. Thank's for your open answer on this and yes i think i can fill in the A,B etc.
<snip>
btw i agree that first priority is making money to survive, second is fix the quick fixes, third is let the android version grow. better slow than not at all.
No grow at all is what killed the palm company so please be transparent about the furure plan's of all version's of handbase. In the short run transperancy looks like it will cost money but in the long run you will win.


I think Edwin has summed it up nicely. I'm not trying to beat a dead horse here, I really love your program and I want it to be successful, when I read the negative thoughts coming from potential users on other forums, I defend HanDBase, I just wanted to pass along some of my thoughts on the matter.
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Re: timeline for forms in android

Postby Brian_Houghton » Fri Aug 19, 2011 11:57 pm

Hello,

Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. In many cases, I completely agree with what you have written.

It's nice to hear the enthusiasm!
Kind Regards,
Brian Houghton, DDH Software
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