We’ve been talking with Automattic for some time now about the WordPress for iPhone application. About the project, the community and the passion behind it. We want the WordPress for iPhone application to be the best mobile blogging tool on the iPhone.
I’d like to invite you into the thought process currently going on inside our collective heads.
First impressions count, it’s what I’d like to focus on right now. When you open WordPress for the first time you’re greeted with this screen:
You have two options:
The second option is interesting, but I’m not sure why it gets equal billing on the home screen when all anyone wants to do the first time they open the application is to set up their blog.
The “Add Blog” screen should be shown by default if you haven’t already added one:
Speaking of which, the cursor should already be placed in the “Blog URL” field and the keyboard should be displayed. There shouldn’t be an option to cancel as the application is unusable without at least one blog present.
The “Save” button should be disabled until the “Blog URL”, “User Name” and “Password” fields have been filled in. They keyboards return key should say “Next” instead of “Done”, it should jump into the next field I need to fill in.
It should change to “Done” only when I’ve entered all the required fields. At the same time the “Save” button should become enabled. In fact the “Save” button should probably read “Done” as well. Something like this:
When I’m done, I want useful feedback. Currently there is a spinning icon in the top right hand corner where the “Save” button used to be. But the keyboard is still present unless I hid it while entering my details. For all intents and purposes this screen still looks like it’s in an editable state. Except the application doesn’t respond at all! As a user, I require a clear indication of what is happening, otherwise confusion ensues, so we’ll fix that too.
After I click “Done” I’m back on the home screen. Why is that? Rather than adding another blog, it seems much more likely to us that you’ll want to start using the app to manage the blog you just added, so we’ll show the “Posts/Pages/Comments” screen instead. You can add the rest of your blogs later.
As you can see we’ve been doing a lot of thinking, scrutinising and playing with ideas. We’ve already started adding these changes to the Subversion repository in the user-interface-rewrite branch.
They say you need to walk before you can run, let alone fly. Right now we’re still crawling, but here’s a sneak peak into the changes that we’ve got planned for the future:
While we’ve singled out these changes for the future, there’s every likelihood that you have other ideas. So while we’re thinking out loud, we would love for you to do the same. Add a comment, or post to the forums. We’re listening!
Update: We’ve updated the site with a gallery of new screenshots.
While we continue to work on ironing out the remaining wrinkles, we thought we’d share a few bits of what’s to come in WordPress for iPhone. When the app launches, we’ll hit the ground running with support for multiple blogs, creating and editing posts, uploading photos from your library or the camera, even privacy settings. And that’s just what we’re starting with — we’ve got some ideas in the hopper that should make managing your WordPress blog incredibly simple, wherever you are. Here’s a few screenshots of the upcoming 1.0 release, just to whet your appetite.