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Iterate 6: Tapbots

Developer Spotlight: Paul Haddad of Tapbots

TiPb's developer spotlights are like DVD/iTunes Extras for the App Store -- a weekly look behind the scenes at the programers and designers that bring you the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad apps and games you love. This week Rene talks with Paul Haddad of Tapbots.

What's your name? Paul Haddad

What's your company's name? Tapbots

Where are you located? Flower Mound, TX

What's your website address? http://tapbots.com

What's your Twitter name? @tapbot_paul and @tapbots

What apps do you make? Weightbot, Convertbot, Pastebot, Calcbot, Tweetbot

What apps, other than your own, are currently among your favorites? My favorite Apps tend to be Mac based: Transmit, VMWare, TextMate, VLC, TF2 :^)

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TweetBot update submitted to Apple, will include push notifications but limited to the first 1000 users

TapBots has announced that it has submitted an updated version of TweetBot, their beautifully designed Twitter app, to Apple for approval and the good news is it will now include push notifications. The downside is that the push notifications are classed as experimental and will be rolled out initially to the first 1000 users.

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Tweetbot once again redefines Twitter for iPhone

Tweetbot just hit the US App Store and boy is it a beauty. Tapbots has done it again and designed an application that is not only functional and pretty, but an artistic masterpiece that I cannot keep my hands off of. I was an instant critic when I read Tapbots' claim that Tweetbot is "a twitter client with personality", but they're right.

A text review can hardly do this app justice because it is impossible to put into words how beautifully Tweetbot is made. Sure, I can describe how, at your touch, a tweet slides up revealing a navigation bar while simultaneous emitting the perfect sound. I can explain that swiping a tweet to right reveals the conversation and swiping to left displays related tweets. I can tell you about smart gestures, multiple timelines, and customizable navigation. I can even spew out a concrete list of every feature that Tweetbot includes. What I can't provide you, however, is the experience.

The problem with Twitter clients these days is that they're all the same. Yes, the same. Sure, the features vary (slightly) between them and some come with cool themes. The experiences, however, are too alike. I used to get excited when a new Twitter app was released because each app offered something different, something new. Today, they all feel the same. What happened? When users flocked to a particular Twitter app, other devs copied what made that app special. Individualization was lost. Now the App Store is basically filled with slight variations of the same app - with the exception of Tweetbot.

Tweetbot is different. It's innovative and refreshing. Tweetbot isn't an app you use, it's one you interact with. Everything has an animation, a sound, a beautiful interface. And true to Tapbots' style, the sounds are subtle and pleasant - enriching the experience.

In case you can't tell, I'm a huge fan of Tweetbot, but it isn't for everybody. Tweetbot is full-featured, but doesn't have every possible feature known to those in the Twitter app world. Tweetbot doesn't have a mute option or display in-line photos. It doesn't have multiple themes or native push notifications (but it's compatible with Boxcar). If these features are deal-breakers to you, then Tweetbot isn't for you. Not yet anyway.

For those who are suckers for design, innovation, and dare I say, personality, Tweetbot will rock your world.

Check out the screenshot gallery after the break!

[$1.99 - iTunes link]

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Tweetbot for iPhone now hitting App Store

Tapbots, one of the most innovative, user experience-oriented iPhone app developers, has released Tweetbot for iPhone. Tweetbot is a Twitter client with personality and Tapbots claims:

Whether it’s the meticulously-crafted interface, sounds & animation, or features like multiple timelines & smart gestures, there’s a lot to love about Tweetbot.

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Convertbot 1.4 for iPhone Rejected by App Store Because Same "Time" Icon Now Confusable for "Recents"

Convertbot [$0.99 - iTunes link] has seen their latest update, version 1.4 for iPhone (and iPod touch), rejected by at least 2 of Apple's 40+ App Store reviewers because the icon they're using for "Time" (the same icon they've been using since 1.0, mind you) is nigh-identical to Apple's built in "Recent" icon, and that was enough to raise that troublesome "user confusion" flag at iTunes HQ.

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iPhone 3.0 Also Stands for Speed -- of Adoption

Paul Haddad from Tapbots let us know just how fast he's seeing users update to iPhone 3.0. Based on the headers included when their app Convertbot checks with its servers to get the latest currency information, Paul figures:

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Convertbot Hits 1.1, Adds Convertbot Mini for Free!

Tapbots, one of the most consistently innovative user experience-oriented development houses on the iPhone platform, just let us know they've updated their latest app, Convertbot (see our review), to version 1.1.

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App Review: Convertbot Unit Converter for iPhone

Convertbot Forum Review by msbaylor. (Visit the thread for video and more pics. For more Forum Reviews, see the TiPb iPhone App Store Forum!)

ConvertBot is by Tapbots - the developers of WeightBot and for those of you that love the way the application operates, this one will not let you down.

This is probably the sleekest conversion application I have seen with its cool animations and sounds. However, the only issues I ran into – it takes longer than I thought the program should take to load. At first I believed that it was the app itself checking an Internet connection to update the currency conversions, but when I put my iPhone in Airplane mode, it took just as long. But it is a good thing to note that even though the currencies could not update, the program is still usable.

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TiPb Interview: Weightbot Developers Mark Jardine and Paul Haddad Discuss iPhone Interface Innovation

Mark Jardine and Paul Haddad of Tapbots are the breakout designers and engineers behind Weightbot (iTunes link), one of the most original user experiences released on the iPhone App Store to date. Continuing the iPhone blog's behind-the-scenes look at iPhone application development, Mark and Paul were kind enough to take time and discuss their ideas on interface and interactivity, and how what more we might expect from Apple's next generation mobile platform.

TiPb: How was approaching the iPhone interface for this App different than how you would have approached an interface for another platform?

Mark: It was really different coming from a web design background. 320x460 isn't a lot of space to work with and then you have to factor in the huge difference in input devices. A person's finger is a lot less accurate than a mouse cursor. At the same time, I wasn't designing a website so I was freed from a lot of rules and conventions I've been following over the past 8 years. So my initial approach was pretty simple. If Weightbot was an actual physical device, how could I make it usable and fun at the same time?

Paul: The thing I found challenging about dealing with the iPhone interface is that users want a silky smooth and yet the iPhone and iPod touch are both very slow compared to any modern Mac. I spent a lot of time juggling things around in order to get a consistent 60 fps for all the various animations within Weightbot. Coming from our current Multi Gigahertz, Multi Gigabyte and Multi Core world where for the most part you don't have to worry about performance to a platform like the iPhone where every cycle and byte counts is a big change.

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