Dialapp featured in Play Store!
'Where does the thought to call someone end, and the dialling begin'
Dialapp in now featured in Google Play!
And we have a 4.5 rating. 120 days, 400,000 people who love the app. Millions of suggestions acted on. Dialapp changed the concept of a fast dialler, and we are happy about the success of the suggestions list.
We owe all of you a big thanks, for being there with us on this journey!
After redesigning the call history tab, we focused on solving other issues around contacts and dialling. Tiny contacts (contacts that decay with time) was introduced. We have a better search coming up in the next big up haul, where you can easily hunt down that call you made, standing next to that shop, on that street, sometime last Thursday evening, but forgot to save the number.
Dialapp was an attempt to route some of the learning we had from building Friday, into a simple use case, aimed at solving a core problem. Dialapp makes calling easier. Period.
[Dialapp] Introducing tiny contacts.
First things first. We launched Dialapp exactly 69 days ago. Today we crossed 1,40,000 downloads, and we have a very high number of daily active users too. A big thanks to our users for the support and appreciation (we have 4.5 ratings in Play Store).
All this puts more excitement and pressure on us to deliver something valuable and unique with every release, and we keep getting amazing feature requests and ideas from our users every now and then.
Today our new version (v1.6) goes live at Play Store,it will have Tiny Contacts in it. So what is Tiny Contacts? Say, you are relocating and you want to find a broker or packers and movers. You just want to temporarily store their number, until you finish moving. You don’t want to litter your address book with random people and contacts, whom you’re not going to call after sometime.
To make life easier for you, we built Tiny Contacts. So every time you save a contact, you will be prompted whether you want to save it permanently or put them as a Tiny Contact. If you choose the latter, you can save it for a specific period, after which it will be automatically purged from your phone (it will prompt you before doing so).
This way, you won’t have to worry about saving all those transient, temporary contacts to your address book. At any point you can also upgrade your tiny contact into a full contact, with a single tap.
We have been dogfooding this feature internally for a couple of weeks now, and it has made managing contacts much easier. We hope to hear your views on this. So update Dialapp and let us know!
"I am not a person for retrospective thoughts." - says Nithin, our Android head!
So when our Android Architect was nominated amongst the top 10 Java professionals around, we weren’t a bit surprised. “God of Java" as we playfully call him within dexetra, Nithin is completely powered by Java. But what came as a surprise to all of us is his vision and perspective toward life, society, future and technology. We’d love you all to read his thoughts in this page, get advice, tips, mentorship etc. Also, if you think he is awesome, give him a vote!
dexetra is all about friday and iris. Now they’ll work together!
One fun hackathon that put us in the global map was iris. We have over 250 million answers served through the platform which has millions of users. We launched iris for the desktop with iris8 (iris for Windows 8). In the meanwhile our flagship product friday has been cooking in the oven. A few months back we launched friday, since then we’ve added over 100 million documents to the friday cloud. So what next?
We’re integrating the two. If you’re an iris user, now you can ask questions about your life, yes, about your past moments and it will use friday to fetch you answers. So if you enable friday integration in iris, you’re going to get eidetic memory (photographic memory as some call it). You will never forget a single thing again. Maybe you want to know
- How many photos did I take last week?
- How many calls did I make on low battery yesterday?
Or whatever you can think of. Just fire up iris and start asking!! We’re super duper excited about this. The prospects are inimaginable, the future is here! So shall we start the journey?
iris. adds another bunch of features!
So after a bit of a break, iris is coming up with a new update. Yet again, this update adds a lot of exciting features! And if you’re wondering what the break was about, we were building iris’s cousin Aisha, which is being bundled with Micromax phones.
So what are the new features?
Iris gets more social. You can upload photos to facebook directly from the iris. app. And the whole social experience with twitter and facebook have been upgraded for smoother and easier access. Now add alarms, and calendar entries right from the app. Just say "remind me to buy groceries at 6 pm" and iris adds a calendar entry. Neat huh? You can even open other apps with voice. Just say, "open camera" or "open music" and iris opens the corresponding app.
Tell us what you feel about the new update. We have also killed a horde of bugs, so the experience should be much smoother!
We hired our first web guy, Shreyas, a fortnight back. And the first thing I wanted him to work on was the dexetra website. We had a very basic, and not-so-great homepage. I wanted to get a better and cleaner landing page. So we both sat together for days, trying out different layouts designs and concepts. One thing that was clear, was the our pages should be minimal on text, and more visual on content.
So after weeks or rework, redesign, retweaking and what not, we have the new dexetra homepage design. Tell us what you think about it. We are also proud of the #madeinindia hashtag we have added to our page. Want to see more guys using this in their pages.
Check out the #newdexetra.
Now we’re 2 years young!
Last Sunday, dexetra turned 2. While traditionally on April 1st, people are fooled for fun, we thought of founding a startup that creates intelligent and useful mobile products.
It has been an amazing journey that I’ve been a part of for the last two years. Starting out as a team of six, and now two years later we are a team of 13, with two of our newest rockstars, Shreyas and Sarita joining in last week. As cliched it may seem, but I can’t deny that we’ve had our rollercoaster moments. Moments, when a normal mortal would start doubting if the journey is worth taking. But unlike rollercoasters, this journey is not going to end soon, and never on the same platform. We believe very strongly about this and hence we’re still driving the coaster to newer heights.
If having fun at office was not enough, we decided to have even morefun celebrating the completion of 2 years. So we took a trip to the nearby amusement park (Wonder La) and soaked our bodies and souls. This day I also realized that being a rockstar entrepreneur taking all those risks with his life, does not imply that he has the same guts to jump into a real rollercoaster ;)
I am really proud of the way our whole team interacts and gels together, and it was evident in the park as well. As nobody shied away from an opportunity to push someone to the pool, be it the founders or the someone who joined the pack just a week back. This cool and informal atmosphere is what makes dexetra even awesome.
The third year is going to be much more crucial and interesting, as iris is finding new markets and friday launching. I am looking forward to another wonderful year ahead with my superhero team at dexetra.
Microsoft TechEd 2012 - hackathon
Microsoft held its first TechEd in Bangalore, we were there and it was a blast. We took part in the hackathon, the challenge was to make a Windows 8 metro app in 24 hours. To make things interesting Microsoft offered a brand new Windows 8 developer tablet (pre-release) to the top 5 apps. We were a bit skeptical about completing the app since we didn’t really know C#. However a dexter does not shy away from a challenge.
The event started with some great sessions, giving us an overview of windows 8 development. After lunch we got our computers out and began the design process. The initial part was really confusing. A lot of “how do I do this?” and “what happened?” was thrown between my partner Vijith and I. We were making progress but slowly and painfully.
The Microsoft developers were helpful yet we were still not comfortable. Slightly dejected we kept pushing and then we get a call from Narayan. We confidently tell him that we will have an app ready by tomorrow, how, we didn’t know, but that was not important. We were thrilled when he said that he will come there and help / motivate us.
Narayan looked at our design and exclaims “it’s too confusing!”. He removes everything. In about 20 minutes he chalks up a simple design that looks amazing. Narayan says “this is what I want, nice and simple”. We quickly start coding and begin implementing the new design and also write our backend communication layer. We code through the night with Narayan beside us correcting the design and offering solutions whenever he could. Some red-bull’s, coffee’s and coke’s later we have an app. Its already morning.
Through the morning we kept adding finer adjustments and cleaning up the app for the demo. We were glad and a bit surprised that we actually managed to finish the app. Our heads buzzing we had some lunch and then demoed our app. We started the demo by asking our favorite question - ‘Hi iris’. Iris booms ‘Hello there’ though the auditorium floor, the crowd is thrilled. The questions kept coming and iris knew exactly what to answer, each time drawing applause from the crowds. The attendees and the Microsoft developers loved the app. We received compliments right from the app design to the concept of iris and the implementation.
By this time we had not slept for over 30 hours. We were happy, we made it and the crowd loved the app. To top that we won the tablet. Winning the tablet felt amazing. The tablet was good but for us it was not just winning the tablet. It was the fact that one, we made an app in 24 hours without having any knowledge in development for Windows 8. Secondly, the crowd and Microsoft developers loved it. What a crazy time, we loved it.
iris. gets a new dress!!
If you’d noticed, we have not pushed any updates for over 2 weeks now. And guess what? We’ve working on a lot of things which required time to implement and testing! And finally it will go live today (in a hour from now, hopefully!). So what is it all about?
First the obvious thing. The user interface. We’re giving iris. a brand new sexy dress. It is going to look lighter and cleaner. And the answers will have more rich content. We would also be able to integrate rich HTML5 content in the answers. And we’re talking to lots of partners to get their APIs working on iris. Tell me how you’re liking the new interface!
And the revamp doesn’t stop with the UI. We’re completely rewritten our underlying architecture so that we can scale iris. faster, add new APIs easier and get a loads of new functionalities for you. The usability changes may not be apparent immediately, but you would see how faster we would be able to add new features in the coming days.
And would you want to see iris. on other platforms too? Post your thoughts in the comments section!
Iris. update, ads and premium app.
Like Steve would say, stats first. We have now around 1.5 Million users, asking around 0.5 - 1 Million answers daily. We have served around 55 Million answers since launch. And if you are wondering, yeah. Iris. punches a deep hole in our budget every month, with our Cloud servers, API partners etc sharing the pie.
We’ve not compromised on our growth just because we’re losing money, we’re aggressively trying to add more and more APIs to iris. all the time. At the same time, we are also thinking of ways to cut the losses. Now, we have two options here. Ads and premium version.
Personally as a heavy smartphone user myself, I would, in general be okay for the apps I use to have ads, if they remain free, as long as the ads are not very intrusive and diverting me from my normal workflow. But, if it is an app which I love the most, which I use all the time, I wouldn’t mind paying for it. I think from the feedback I got from you all, most of our users wouldn’t mind ads, if they’re not too much. We’re dedicating a row on the top of the app for ads. Hope these users would approve this, considering the fact that we burn thousands of dollars every month.
Now, some users would disagree. They would say that they’re ready to pay for the app as long as we maintain the quality, and have no ads. So we’re also bringing an in-app purchase to the app, which would do the following.
- Removes ads.
- Premium response time. (Dedicated server which would get responses faster)
- Better support.
I hope this would make all our users happy. This move is not to make huge profits from iris. app but to make sure, we are able to keep the balance sheet green.
On other news, iris now loves the twitter bird. You can update the status and read tweets from iris. app. Some other exciting APIs are being baked, which we will bring out in the coming updates. Feel free to give your feedback here in the comments section!!