While I much prefer typing an article sitting in front of my desktop computer, this line of work means that there are times when articles need to be written out in the field. For that I rely on the WordPress app for iOS. When I first started writing, I went to check out the WordPress app for my Android tablet, and was very disappointed with it. It lacked a lot of the functionality of the browser version of WordPress. Some things were very difficult to do unless you knew the HTML code. This made it more of a pain to use the app.
A few months later the app got a major update to version 2.0, and I believe the iOS app also got update at the same time. That update brought a lot more functionality to the app. There were still a couple things that were kind of annoying to try and do, but over all it was a much needed update, one that made the app mostly usable. Now, the iOS app was updated to version 3.1. WordPress describes the update as a major UI refresh. Check out the changelog below.
★ Major UI Refresh!
- New sidebar menu for quick navigation.
- Sliding panels on the iPad for greatly improved navigation and ease of use.
- Updated colors and graphics.
- Improved sign up experience.
- New app icon.
★ Support for Post Formats.
★ WordPress.com Reader and Quick Photo added for the iPad.
★ New Simple post preview feature for the iPad.
★ All-new WordPress.com stats.
★ New WordPress.com Friend Finder feature helps you find your friends blogging on WordPress.com.
★ Landscape orientation support throughout the app.
★ Easy access to your site – view it and access the web dashboard right from the app.
★ Last but not least – many reliability improvements and performance tweaks.
I like the UI changes, as it makes it much easier to navigate the app. I think the WordPress blog reader is a great way to find some new blogs to follow, but I don’t know how much it will get used. While WordPress is one of the more popular blog software available, it’s by no means the only one. I would say I casually browse a bunch of different blogs, and they aren’t all on WordPress. I want to be able to read all my blogs in the same place if possible, not use this app for WordPress blogs and another app for the rest. I also found out that if you subscribe to a blog in the app, you will receive emails whenever that blog gets updated. I’m sure you can change that pretty easily, but it just really annoyed me. I expected if I subscribed in the app that I would get notified in the app, not in my email. If I subscribed to Pocketables, I would be receiving 10-15 emails a day.
Overall the update is very nice, with many needed changes, and a lot of improvements. I wonder if this is an iOS only update, or if like before I will be seeing this shortly on my Android tablet. Either way it will be nice to use this updated version on my iPad when needed. Even today, while waiting for my boss to arrive at work, I was sitting in my car and writing this article using the updated WordPress app and was very happy.