Riposte 1.2 for app.net dropped today and it’s a ridiculously good update. Some tidbits from the release notes:
Custom Typefaces: choose from 9 new typefaces to suit your style.
QuickView for Messages: moves Private Messages from the side menu to a hovering button for quick access (optional).
Draft auto-saving, including reply and image attachment info. Never worry about hitting Cancel again. It just works.
Fast account switch gesture: use 2 finger swipes from any root view to switch to the next/previous account.
Brightness control gesture: drag up/down with 3 fingers to fade your screen’s brightness.
Most of these new features speak in a larger context to a smart move on the part of the developers. They’ve essentially come up with a new business plan —while that plan may be short lived, it’s a brainy one. The “Pro” features will run you $4.99, and while we’ll no doubt hear whines from people that coughed up the $5 before the app went free, I think it’s brilliant.
In the months that have passed since app.net added a free tier, the user base has grown by a pretty substantial amount. Alex Knight touched on this recently:
According to data sourced from appnetizens, there are now 86,855 accounts. That’s a incredible growth from February (I recall it being less than 30,00 but can’t seem to get historical data from then). As far as active users, based on public data, there has definitely been a steady increase of active users since February, however, it still isn’t fantastic.
Alex is right about the amount of active users not being great, but for now, it’s good enough. When Riposte went free, it essentially jumped into favor with a big handful of users that may not have paid for it. When the free tier opened up, I’m assuming their user-ship went up even further. Now with the addition of “Pro” features, those same users –having previously seen how good the app is– will be more likely to give up a few bucks. This at least provides some short-term sustanability for the developers. Again, I think it’s a smart move.
This isn’t meant to be one of those “app.net is better than [insert service here]” posts, but I will say that the app ecosystem there is great. There is an abundance of great apps being built on the platform, and even though a majority of those are built on Alpha —which is not the most exciting prospect of the service— I’m impressed. Riposte 1.2 is impressive.