Travel Stories

Create travel journals and find inspiration from others

Under 10 Employees
Multiple Founders
Founders Code
Photography
Travel

Many times before planning a trip, we're not decided where to go and what to see. Sure, services like Trip Advisor or Yelp exist, but they're not ... natural, not social enough.

October 8, 2018 Waiting another week to launch

Apparently the best days to launch on iOS are Saturday and Sunday. Bummer, they just went by.

October 7, 2018 Approved!

We're now preparing for launching it, but we're also waiting for a proper time to do it; I don't think Sunday noon is the best time for it.

September 20, 2018 Submitted

But rejected.

Our monetization plan was to use consumable In App Purchases for unlocking certain features. We knew that will most likely be not approved by Apple, since when a user "unlocks" something, it has to be made available forever, so a non-consumable IAP has to be used.

The idea was that we have platform-specific accounts, so a person might want to create several accounts, which is not possible with non-consumables. So we tried our luck with consumables.

Surely enough, we got rejected. So we reworked our logic a little to make use of non-consumables like this:

  • If you're purchasing, activate the feature on the current account.
  • If you're restoring purchases on the same account (due to a reinstall, for example) you'll end up not calling Apple's servers at all, since the account is marked on our server as having the features unlocked.
  • If you're trying to purchase again on another account, you'll get a failure, with a message saying that you already purchased this and you should login with x*****y to use the features.
  • If you're restoring purchases on another account, you'll end up doing the same thing as above.

It's not perfect: users will be able to upgrade only one account, but that's what the vast majority of users will do anyway.

We submitted again and waiting on Apple's answer.

Premature optimization and premature thinking of all scenarios is bad. You might end up not needing any of it.

September 13, 2018 Creating a landing page

I'm not a designer, nor a real web developer, but I did my share of website creation.

But for Travel Stories I wanted something better, something more carefully thought.

Luckily enough, I was in the midst of watching https://designcode.io tutorials about design. Also luckily enough, I do like to tinker with new toys, so off I went to design something.

After the Sketch file was done, it wasn't that hard to implement it. But I also wanted some finishing touches, like animations. So I spent another several hours finding, implementing, then tweaking some animations, to give the page a certain ... interesting air.

Don't be afraid to experiment with new things, you might end up realizing it was easier than you imagined. As it always is.

Check it out here.

August 1, 2018 User generated content

Since the app is 100% based on user-generated content, we had to implement user/content blocking and/or reporting. What does content mean? A story or an entry.

How does a search look like? Let's say it searches all stories and all entries by a keyword. But the blocking comes in and pretty much kicks you in the face.

Why? Well, because, on top of the obvious "Exclude a blocked story/entry/user?" you also have to take into account if the creator of a story/entry has blocked you.

And all of these have to be carefully tailored in an optimized (ha!) query, that's also easy to understand when reading it 3 months later.

I hope this won't blow up 😞

Many times before planning a trip, we're not decided where to go and what to see. Sure, services like Trip Advisor or Yelp exist, but they're not ... natural, not social enough.