The new home screen! The top row lets you filter by either debts, credits, or all friends.
The whole Splitwise team is proud and thrilled to announce the release of the most wonderful Android app we’ve ever designed – Splitwise Android v3. It’s a whole new look and the result of many months of toil by Marshall, with help in the last couple months from Ryan and Caleb. Testing was carried out by the whole team as well as volunteer testers from our user base, to whom we are very grateful.
To my thumbs and eyes, our Android app has gone from a source of embarrassment to one of the most polished productivity apps in the Play Store. Some highlights from the new build:
- Unified logo and color scheme and a look that embodies the Android style
- Pay friends via PayPal (for US users only)
- Simplified and streamlined “Add Bill” dialog
- Push notifications for new expenses and edits
- Sidebar menu to easily find balances with groups or people
- New friend view, including both group balances and private IOUs
Late last week, Ryan made a much-needed improvement to Splitwise’s delete friend functionality. Now, you can delete any friend as long as they’re not in a group with you.
Previously, Splitwise blocked you from deleting friends if you had ever added an expense outside of a group with them AND another friend. This was happening because deleting friends deleted all expense records between you two, and Splitwise wanted to block multi-party records from being deleted in case one of the parties on the expense wasn’t all settled up yet. Ryan built a work-around that will enable you to delete the friends you want, without obliterating a piece of someone else’s balance puzzle.
The Google patent authors hypothetically using Splitwise
Last week, we learned from GeekWire that Google has applied for a patent on our bread and butter technology: tracking groups of bills split with friends. The patent application describes a system of shared balances and payments between friends in a group – exactly what Splitwise and some of our competitors have been doing publicly for years. Google currently has no group-splitting product, and one can only assume they are considering adding a splitting service to Google Wallet. (Google, if you want to integrate Splitwise with Wallet, reach out to us).
The equally ironic prior art search
Obviously, it’s “not a joke” to have a tech giant submit a patent application for exactly what your business has been doing for years. But we couldn’t help but laugh when, within the same week, a lobbyist paid by Google approached us to ask if we would publicly support a patent reform bill. We are literally being lobbied for patent reform and patent-trolled by Google at the same time. Continue reading
Posted in Dev Blog, Fairness Calcualators, News Articles, Opinion
Tagged bill-splitting, check splitting, eff, geekwire, google, google patent, google patents bill splitting, ohwhattheeff, patent reform, patents
This is what we’re going for.
For the past few months, Splitwise has been hard at work making much-needed improvements to our Android app. We released a faster, less buggy build in late August, and since then we’ve devoted nearly all our developer resources to a pristine 3.0 candidate that we can’t wait to get into your hands.
To achieve Android awesomeness for 3.0, we needed to build a Gmail-style autocomplete field for selecting friends when creating expenses. I was expecting to find this fairly easy to do with the Android SDK. Lots of apps must need this need, and I was aware of the AutoCompleteTextView and MultiAutoCompleteTextView classes. How hard could it be?
The short answer: Pretty darn hard! Hopefully, not anymore. We’ve just released an open-source version of the code on GitHub! Go grab the Splitwise TokenAutoComplete project to have your own wonderful, tokenized autocomplete view up and running in about half an hour. It works on Android versions all the way back to 2.2 (Froyo). More on my process below the fold. Continue reading
This morning, we were delighted to discover that TIME has included our app in The 50 Best iPhone Apps, 2013 edition. We’ve spent a lot of time polishing our iPhone app to make it as delightful as possible, and it’s wonderful to get this kind of recognition. Sometimes, it’s hard to see the wonderful parts of the app we’ve made; we are mostly focused on all the flaws we want to fix.
We also know our Android app is simply not this good yet. If you’re one of our Android users, you know we’ve only recently started making updates to the app again and they’ve seemed pretty small.
The secret is that I’ve been laying the groundwork in those updates to get the Android app up to the level of quality you see in the rest of our software. Right now, most of the engineering team is in the middle of a major redesign of our Android app that I can’t wait to get in your hands.
Population by ZIP code / ZCTA from US Census 2010. Why was this so freaking hard to find?
I’m going to kick off a multi-part series on US Census data by offering a totally free download, in XLS or CSV format, of something strangely hard-to-Google: the 2010 US Census population by Zip code (technically, by ZCTA). Splitwise is offering these files free of charge and in the public domain, and I can’t believe how many other sites are charging for them!
But the difficulty I had in creating this data set and using the US Census website has inspired me to write a bit more about how to use one of the world’s most interesting open data sources.
We’re excited to announce a payments integration you’ve been clamoring for: Splitwise and Venmo. As of today, iPhone users in the US will be able to directly settle up Splitwise debts using Venmo, as well as cash or PayPal.
New settle up screen
Our goal has always been to include great, diverse payment options within Splitwise. Venmo was popularly requested in our user-fueled suggestion forums, and the folks at Venmo have provided a great new API and iPhone SDK to open their platform to us; it only seemed natural to use these developments as impetus to execute the often-requested integration.
Using Venmo within the Splitwise app works the same way as using Paypal. When you hit ‘Settle Up’, Venmo will be an option, joining the ‘Record a cash payment’ and ‘Pay with PayPal’ buttons.