Clean up the UI.
I love your app, but it does need a bit of a UI overhaul.
1 Remove unessicary clutter and put more relevant info in the front. Put the catigories selector into the side bar. The "hide read podcast" button probably won't be used very often to justify putting it were it is and cluttering the display. The refresh button is redundant because you already can swipe down to refresh, which is more intuitive. Put a search button into the top bar. A back button to go to the main page from individual podcast pages would be nice though. I saw sub menus that were either mini versions of the main menus, or popups. Change all the sub menus to popups. Move "icons help" into help.
2 Clean up the player. First, make it so that you can swipe down to collapse the player (like the google play music app) or replace the side menu tab with a close button. Maybe make the album art and player controls a bit smaller so you can move the favorite and sleep timer buttons down. A podcast description button might want to be put down there as well, because I would prefer that to tapping on the artwork (less chance of accidentally hitting it ) instead, make tapping the artwork show the queue. The speed ajustment should be put into the menu. Maybe share rate and "www" (that NEEDS to be more descriptive) could be combined into one sub menu. Remember to remvove redundant options.
3 clean up the side tray and its options. Remove search, player, and playlist (queue) buttons (because you implemented better ways of doing that before) Also remove the bottom refresh, settings, and add buttons, and replace it with one big settings button. Take out all solid color from the side tray. Combine "all" and "7 day" into a feed which has seperators for each day/week.
4 make the app more visually appealing. Make a white version, so people better notice the material design. (Most material design apps are white by default, but have a dark mode option). Get rid of the shadow on the podcast artwork. Make the top of the podcast's individual page a giant picture of the artwork instead of the translucent stuff. Clean up the fonts, especially in the sub menus. Make the blue accents a shade of blue or another color that is brighter.
I know that was long, but I really am happy that I have so much to critique. It isn't at all bad that the app is overflowing with features. Something like pocketcasts (I think that's what it is called) might have pretty design, but functionality should come first. Thank you so much for making a great app! It was 100% worth my money. I hope this feedback helps and I am totally willing to bug test in any way.
Magne Røyset commented
I'm sure there are loads of UI improvements that can be done, but I frequently toggle the hide played episodes button. I'm more for being able to customize what buttons are available. For instance, when selecting multiple episodes in the playlist, I very rarely do so to delete them. But I've often accidentally clicked the delete button when trying to access the drop down menu. If I've selected 20-30 episodes to reorganize them, I'll have to try to remember and hun them down to redownload and reads them to the playlist. If I could remove/replace that delete button I would be very happy, but I'm sure other users find it to be very useful.
Please do not make major changes to UI. The main reason I use this application is the UI and feature set. I want more features even if it makes it look "not polished". I have uninstalled other "polished" applications if they were missing features.
I just added it and imported all of my podcast from another app that I now hate and my first impression I was looking at an airport arrival/departure board or a business news where the stock exchange just marquees by. It's very overwhelming for new users and I wouldn't be surprised if it just turns off some new users.
Yes, please do that!
My main points:
- pressing the episode art on the player page should play/pause the playback. at least as an option.
- the progress bar needs a bit more space above and below, rn it is too crammed with the other controls
- the control elements in the notification are crammed to the left side, when the should be centered (imo) to make it easier to get to them, phones are huge so putting them on the left side makes it very hard to control PA one-handed
- let me disable all video functions, I don't use it, it's just more clutter in the UI
- allow to hide UI elements like the elapsed time since last episode, the hide read episodes, the favorite star, the bookmark icon and so on. Basically everything that isn't base functionality.That will make everybody happy.
YES YES YES!
Please clean up the UI.
Put the more important items from "somewhere in the menu" to buttons. (Especially, because some menu positions (like "mark as read") differ from context to context, so I always have to read/search the menus :-|
BTW: I came here to see if items like "mark as read" or "remove from playlist" are to be placed onto prominent buttons
Also, a direct playing icon (without the intermediate description screen) would be great. Just like the little "Download" icon.
BTW2: I'm still happy to be a paying customer ;-)
I whole heartedly disagree with EVERYTHING suggested here. I do agree that maybe access to rateing systems could be better, but I literally cringed at every suggestion here especially the hide played podcasts button; I use that, probably, 15 or more times a day.
Mike Blazanin commented
I wholeheartedly disagree on the "hide read podcasts" button thing. I use that button moderately regularly, whenever I am browsing my subscriptions.
What do you mean by 'questionary'?
Please let me know (email@example.com)
Feel free to let me know which menus you want to remove as well.
Same for me, I don't agree to all changes suggested, but reducing the menus would be a great improvement.
To match all requests, why not allow users to choose in the settings which menu entry they want to be displayed?
Concrete example: I use the share button often to share radio shows. Every time, I have to go through the whole questionary until I have to choose finally the application where I want to share over and over again.
Johannes Weisr commented
Interesting ideas. I don't agree to all the changes made here (personally and from a usability point of view) but cleaning up definitely would be a good item on the roadmap.
Please don't remove the refresh Button... i hate the swipe down option.
Also, leave a sliver of the slide out side bar to indicate that it is there. It helps with UI discovery.
Please increase vertical height of each row in the side bar. One of the issues is the controls are such small targets on a touch-based UI.
Also, in the latest episodes list, instead of a check box at the top to start selection, have the check box on each row. This reduces the number of taps required, which can be a lot when adding and removing episodes to the playlist. And doubly tedious when doing this on a relatively large tablet, due to the distance between touch points.
Matthew Cherrey commented
Edit: when I said solid color in the side tray, I meant primary color