The future of Heads-up

Hi everyone!

Back in June, I published a little hobby project, called Android 5.0 “L” notifications. It was basically just a stripped-down version of another project I was working on, themed to look like Android L. I thought a few Android fans would download it, and that some of them would like it.

This was a day or two before I went on a little road trip through Norway, mostly with poor or nonexistent mobile coverage. The trip was really cool, with all the jaw-dropping Norwegian mountains, waterfalls, fjords and everything. But none of that made my jaw drop as far as when I got home and turned on my computer. As I said, I expected a few downloads. In my world, that means less than 20. In total. Never, ever anything beyond that. It never even occurred to me that the number could have three digits, and four … that was farther away than words can describe.

My point is, I never thought it was be possible that 3,627 individual human beings actually could have tapped that install button. But for some reason, they had. Still in some kind of shock-awed-paralyzed-wow-state, I watched as another thousand people downloaded the app … almost every day! To each and every one of you: Thank you! You’re awesome!

Today, about a month later, over 20,000 of you are still using Heads-up. With today’s update, I’m fixing some things, adding some features and polishing the app. All of these improvements have been suggested by you. And there’s more to come. Far more.

Unfortunately, summer is coming to an end, and school is about to start. That means a huge amount of homework, and less time for coding. Many of your suggestions are also conflicting, with one feature blocking another. All this points in one direction: prioritizing.

So, which of these ideas should I focus on:

Multiple notifications: many of you are asking for a way to handle multiple notifications. There are many ways to do this, but it basically it comes down to these two solutions:

  1. multi-paging_wwwHorizontal paging: display one notification at a time, and swipe through them horizontally. Since horizontal swipes are used by the paging, you can swipe down to dismiss the notification. Swiping up can have other features, like “remind me later”.
  2. Vertical list: put the notifications on top of each other. This can take up the whole screen if you get a lot of notifications, but you get to see all the popups at once (unless you get really many notifications). This implies a push towards becoming a lock screen.multi-list_www

Another option is to skip multiple notifications altogether, and keep focusing on one at a time. This gives me time to add other features, like these:

  • Quick reply for SMS (only SMS, other apps is unfortunately not possible due to security restrictions)
  • Chat heads and advanced theming
  • Improving device support (anyone using Android 2.x?)
  • Ditching this project, and doing something else

But now I’ve been talking enough. Which feature do you want?

The future of Heads-up: now what?