Today, we launched swapit beta 2 to our group of invite-only beta testers.
This new beta 2 has been in the works ever since we launched beta 1 of swapit. We have taken a lot of feedback from our first beta testers and are applying that feedback to our new betas. By launching beta 2 today, we take the first step to incorporate that initial feedback and to prepare ourselves for more feedback to come.
Furthermore, with our swapit beta 2 we have extended our invite-only beta test by 53 new beta testers. According to our beta test plan (refer to “Our Rough Beta Plan” in this post), we had planned for 50 new beta testers and have slightly surpassed that goal.
These are the changes in swapit beta 2 we added:
Better Location Integration
The initial map integration of swapit was — present. It was there, it worked, but it was rather rudimentary. Because we believe the location-reference is at the core of swapit we put a lot more effort into integrating that location information much better.
1. Custom Map Integration
Previously, swapit was just launching the external app Google Maps to show an item on the map. We have now switched to integrate an own map view into swapit that allows us to customize a lot of things inside that map.
2. Show All Items On The Map
To get an aggregate overview of items that are on sale nearby, we have now integrated the option to view all items on a map. That’s a rather handy feature if you want to browse and discover items that are being sold nearby and you’re more of a visual person who likes to see things on a map rather than a list.
3. Show More Item Details On The Map
We now have the freedom to show pretty much anything on the map. We have the freedom to choose our own design, layout and content; and we are taking advantage of that. Therefore, you can now click on any item in the map and a small tooltip comes up that shows you the item’s title, price, description as well as the item’s photo.
4. Show “Neighborhood” In Item Details
One interesting feedback we had received from beta testers was that not everyone might like the “223 meters away” distance we had shown in our detail screen. Some folks just want to see “Central”, “Sheung Wan” or “North Point” there. That’s great feedback and we have added that feature for you!
We have added some basic statistics to the side pane of swapit to be able to keep track of the app’s progress. At the same time, we believe being transparent with everyone helps our business in the long run. Therefore, please feel free to check out the stats yourself.
User Interface Improvements
The user interface is very important to us. It is important for us to communicate our style through design and aesthetics. Therefore, we have re-organized some parts of it, changed the layout of the side pane, change the app icon, and so on. We will keep working on this as swapit beta is a work-in-progress.
We want to make sure everyone has the chance to invite their friends. Therefore, swapit now allows to invite up to 5 friends to our invite-only beta right from inside the app. As we are looking to increase our beta tester base by 150 new beta testers for the next beta, we made it very easy for all current beta testers to invite their friends with the click of a button.
Sound Effects For The Fun Of It
For the fun of it, we have played a bit with our swapit.la website URL and went to the studio to record some funny sounds for it. We just did it for the fun of it and added some of those funny sounds at some parts inside the app. Perhaps you find our sounds and we hope they put a smile on your face. 🙂
Furthermore, we have also fixed many small bugs that would take too long to list here. We hope we have put out a great beta you all will like and we hope you will invite your friends our next beta which will launch some time after Chinese New Year.
If you haven’t joined our beta yet, you can request an invite now at: http://swapit.la