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SchoolMessenger’s Custom Mobile App is changing its minimum OS compatibility for iOS and Android devices. When Google and Apple upgrade their OS versions on Android and iOS, they discontinue support for older versions, requiring entire Android and iOS ecosystems to adapt. The upgrades impact SchoolMessenger’s Custom Mobile App as well.

For years we have been able to support older devices running on iOS 9.3.5 and Android 4.4. Unfortunately, 3rd party APIs that support the new iOS 13 version and soon to be released Android 11 version in Fall 2020 will no longer be compatible with traditional devices running on older operating systems.

What is a minimum version?

Minimum version refers to the lowest version of a supported operating system of a mobile device such as your smartphone or tablet. Every mobile app will set limits on the earliest version of iOS or Android that can successfully run the app. For example, if your phone is on iOS 10 and an app requires a minimum version of iOS 11, you will not be able to install the app from the App Store until your device is running on iOS 11 or higher.

What is the current minimum version supported by SchoolMessenger’s CustomApp?

Currently we support iOS 9.3.5 (originally released in 2016) and Android 4.4.4 (originally released in 2013), but we are going to increase our supported minimum versions for iOS and Android devices in the summer of 2020.

What are the new minimum supported versions for iOS and Android on CustomApp and when will the change happen?

SchoolMessenger’s CustomApp is upgrading our supported minimum versions for iOS and Android as follows:

MINIMUM SUPPORTED VERSIONS PRE-JUNE 2020   POST-JUNE 2020
 iOS Devices  iOS 9.3.5 iOS 11.0 
 Android Devices Android 4.4.4  Android 6.0 

Why is the minimum version supported by SchoolMessenger’s CustomApp going to be increased?

Every year, Apple and Google release new versions of their iOS and Android operating systems and end support for older versions. CustomApp currently keeps up with supporting the latest and newest versions while maintaining support for older versions. However, with the latest iOS 13 and Android 10 updates, we will be forced to drop support for some of those older versions.

CustomApp uses 3rd party plugins to deliver some of our features such as managing your channel subscriptions and your push notifications as well as posting from the app to your social media accounts. With the latest iOS and Android updates, these 3rd party plugins are dropping support for older versions of iOS and Android, which will bring undesired behavior to CustomApp. We are prioritizing a smooth experience of CustomApp in a rapidly changing iOS and Android environment. To ensure that the expected behavior and your day-to-day app use is not impacted by these external changes, we made the decision to increase our minimum supported version for iOS devices to iOS 11.0 and Android devices to Android 6.0 respectively.

How many users are on versions older than iOS 11 and Android 6?

Luckily, less than 2% of our users are running on iOS 11 and Android 6 or lower.

What does this mean if I want to install my school’s app for the first time after June 2020?

If you are on an iOS device, check that your mobile device is running on iOS 11.0 or higher. Similarly, if you are on an Android device, check that you are running on Android 6.0 or higher. You will be able to install and use your school’s app if you are running on these versions or higher.

If you are running on a version lower than iOS 11 or Android 6, you will not be able to install your school’s app until you have upgraded to at least iOS 11 or Android 6 on your device.

What does this mean if I already have my school app installed and want to update it after June 2020?

You will be able to continue to use your school app on your phone without any impact from this change. If your device is running on iOS 11 or Android 6 or a higher version, you will be able to install new updates for your school app without any issues.

If you are running on a version lower than iOS 11 or Android 6, you will be able to use your school app in its current version, but some features may not work as expected. You will also not be able to install any new updates until you have upgraded to at least iOS 11 or Android 6 on your device. To prevent any potential of not being able to use certain app features, such as receiving notifications, unexpected app crashes, and getting the latest security updates and bug fixes, we encourage you to upgrade to the latest iOS and Android versions before June 2020.

Posted by trevor.mackay  On Jun 08, 2020 at 10:49 AM
  

SchoolMessenger App Version 1.9.18 Released

Version 1.9.18 of our SchoolMessenger App for mobile was recently released for iPhone and Android. This release included enhancements to Push Notification functionality, small changes to the User Interface as well as some BugFixes. 

Android

Enhancements
  • Push Notifications: When Push Notifications are enabled, the system now sends a single request to update all notification types at once.
BugFixes
  • Push Notifications: some users were not receiving push notifications.
  • User Interface Changes: when the users had a lot of contacts on the Attendance page, their names hid the Help icon. The menu icons have also been updated to align with the icons on the iOS app for alignment and continuity.
  • Teacher Messages: when users would tap the Send button multiple times, the app would crash.

iOS

Enhancements
  • Log In: usernames and passwords are now auto-filled when logging in
  • User Interface Changes: the position of the Help icon was moved to align with the position of the Help icon in the Android app. 
BugFixes
  • Attendance Page: Pulling down on the Attendance Page caused an unnecessary Warning message to pop up. 

SchoolMessenger App for Web

BugFixes
  • Newsletters: Newsletters sent from Communicate using Stationary were not displaying properly in the Messages Page.  

Posted by jnarag  On Jun 02, 2020 at 12:02 PM
  

Version 2020.1 of our Presence Content Management System (CMS) has been released. This release includes a new mobile menu and an optional Form Builder beta as well as a number of bugfixes and minor enhancements. 

New Mobile Menu

A new mobile menu has been included with the release. This new mobile menu is fully keyboard accessible, empowering users relying on screen-readers to easily navigate your site. 

Form Builder Beta

A new optional tool is now available to assist you with the creation of new form templates. This feature is not enabled by default, but if you wish to try it on your sites, you can contact our support team and they will be happy to enable this feature for your site(s). 

Bugfixes

The Presence 2020.1 release also contains numerous bugfixes including fixing an issue where two icon image files in the administrator toolbar were loading over HTTP, even when using HTTPS, and an issue that some users were experiencing when trying to access calendar events through search. 

More Information

You can get more information on what was changed with the release by logging into your Presence site, opening the Shortcuts in your Administrator Toolbar and clicking What's New

Clicking on What's New

Posted by trevor.mackay  On Apr 24, 2020 at 2:05 AM
  

SchoolMessenger App Version 1.9.17 Released

Version 1.9.17 of our SchoolMessenger App for mobile was recently released for iPhone and Android. This release included backend enhancements to help the system run with more efficiency.

The release also included an enhancement for iOS that allows the user flexibility with updating the app when a new version is released. When a new version is available, upon opening the app, the user will see a pop up window informing them that an update is available. Users can choose to update their app or wait until the next release.

Posted by jnarag  On Apr 06, 2020 at 5:55 PM
  

SchoolMessenger App Version 1.9.16 Released

Version 1.9.16 of our SchoolMessenger App for mobile was recently released for iPhone and Android. This release included minor text adjustments on the Attendance page for Android and iPhone for alignment. The release also included some internal backend enhancements and application bugfixes.

BugFixes

On iOS:

  • Set Up Wizard: If the user selected "Skip" on the Contacts and/or the Attendance pages as well as "Finish" in the Setup Wizard, they were taken to the Messages page instead of the Help page.
  • Attendance Page: List View for Absences didn't display alert messages.

On Android:

  • Attendance Page: The user wasn't able to create an absence due to an 'exam day' on a regular day. 

Posted by jnarag  On Mar 16, 2020 at 7:58 PM
  

Version 4.27 of our Custom Mobile App was recently released. This release added support for additional Android screens and made some necessary changes required for iOS 13. The release also included some internal enhancements and application bugfixes.

Expanded Home Screen Support

In this release we have added support for Android devices using an 18:9 aspect ratio as well as enhancing support for Android devices with notches on their display screen. 

Application Updates

Some of the changes in the 4.27 update involved making required changes to our Custom Mobile App to keep up with changes being made with Apple App Store requirements in April 2020. 

In April 2020, the App Store will require all new apps and app updates to existing apps to target the latest version of iOS - iOS 13. Custom App now targets iOS 13 for all iOS builds, for both new apps and updates to existing apps, when submitted to stores. Exisiting apps in stores will continue to function without issue. If you require a new version of the app in the App Store, we will automatically update your app to support iOS 13 in compliance with Apple requirements.

Also in April 2020, Apple will no longer accept new apps using UIWebView to be submitted to the App Store. Similarly, existing apps using UIWebView will not be accepted starting in December 2020. Apps already in the App Store will continue to work without any updates. Custom App now uses the new method, WKWebView, for all new app and app update submissions to the App Store. If you require a new version of the app in the App Store, we will automatically submit your app using WKWebView in compliance with Apple requirements.

Both Apple and Google are constantly evolving the way they interact with applications like the Custom Mobile App. As such, a good chunk of our time is often devoted to ensuring that the Custom App Application is kept up to date with these changes so that your application will continue to work with Apple and Google. Such was the case with this most recent update as we made changes so our product would continue working after changes that Apple is rolling out.

BugFixes

The 4.27 release included various fixes for a number of bugs. One of these fixes requires your application to be rebuilt. 

If you are experiencing the following issue, please contact our support team to request your application be rebuilt: 

  • No count of page views showing when viewing the Statistics section in the App Builder.

Important: If you have not yet created developer accounts, you will need to do so in order for your application to be rebuilt. For information on setting up your accounts, click here. The iOS and Google Play stores require each client to have a developer account in order to deploy new versions of your application into their stores. 

Posted by trevor.mackay  On Mar 06, 2020 at 12:09 PM
  

In the middle of February version 3.1 of our SafeMail product was released. The release includes automatically picking up when a student account is moved from one OU to another, enchancements to how can subscribe and unsubscribe to emailed reports, security enhancements and numerous bugfixes. 

Account Syncing

With the 3.1 release, we have made updates to support the latest version of the Office SDK. With this update, SafeMail will now perform a daily scan to pick up any accounts that have been moved from one OU to another in Office365. Google accounts were already syncing automatically so the sync for Google has not changed with this release. 

Report Subscriptions Enhanced

You are now able subscribe to be emailed reports from within the Customer Help Portal. Each of these emailed reports will also contain an unsubscribe link to make it easy to unsubscribe from the reports at any time. 

Security Enhancements

The 3.1 release now forces users accessing the SafeMail Customer portal to use HTTPS even if the user types in HTTP in the address bar. 

BugFixes

The 3.1 release also included various fixes for a number of bugs including issues with handling duplicate file names, notifications for Google Drive files that have been shared between multiple users and sending out emails for password reset requests. 

Posted by trevor.mackay  On Feb 10, 2020 at 2:09 PM
  

Version 4.26 of our Custom Mobile App was recently released. This release was primarily focused on updates to the Custom Mobile App to keep it inline with recent changes to the Google Play store. The release also included some minor accessiblity enhancements and application bugfixes.

Application Updates

The main focus of the 4.26 update was making required changes to our Custom Mobile App to keep up with changes being made with Google Play and the Android Ecosystem. 

Both Apple and Google are constantly evolving the way they interact with applications like the Custom Mobile App. As such, a good chunk of our time is often devoted to ensuring that the Custom App Application is kept up to date with these changes so that your application will continue to work with Apple and Google. Such was the case with this most recent update as we made changes so our product would continue working after changes that Google is rolling out.

Accessiblity Update

The 4.26 release makes changes to the channel icons so that the icons are more accessible. To take advantage of these changes, please contact our support team to request your application be rebuilt.

Important: If you have not yet created developer accounts, you will need to do so in order for your application to be rebuilt. For information on setting up your accounts, click here. The iOS and Google Play stores require each client to have a developer account in order to deploy new versions of your application into their stores. 

BugFixes

The 4.26 release included various fixes for a number of bugs. One of these fixes requires your application to be rebuilt. 

If you are experiencing the following issue, please contact our support team to request your application be rebuilt: 

  • No sound for push notifications send to iOS devices 

Important: If you have not yet created developer accounts, you will need to do so in order for your application to be rebuilt. For information on setting up your accounts, click here. The iOS and Google Play stores require each client to have a developer account in order to deploy new versions of your application into their stores. 

Posted by trevor.mackay  On Dec 09, 2019 at 8:22 AM
  

At the end of September, 2019 version 4.25 of our Custom Mobile App was released. The release includes numerous bugfixes and a major change to the way statistics are gathered about application usage.

Major Change in Stats Tracking

Google is retiring their traditional Google Analytics for mobile applications and replacing it with Google Analytics for Firebase. Because of this, the traditional Google Analytics tracking will stop working after October 31st, 2019. In the 4.25 release, we added support for the new Firebase tracking method. 

If you already have gone through the process of creating developer accounts, our team will have already become work on rebuilding your application to enable support for the new analytics. 

Once your application has been updated to support Firebase, our support team will set your Firebase Anayltics to On.

Enabling Firebase

Important: If you have not yet created developer accounts, you will need to do so if you want to be able to keep tracking usage data after October 31st, 2019. For information on setting up your accounts, click hereThe iOS and Google Play stores require each client to have a developer account in order to deploy new versions of your application into their stores. 

BugFixes

The 4.25 release also included various fixes for a number of bugs. Some of these fixes require your application to be rebuilt. 

If you are experiencing one of the following issues, please contact our support team to request your application be rebuilt. 

  • Unable to add event location to device calendar.
  • Some images that use HTTPS URLs are not loading. 
  • News story images that are being pulled from Presence are not loading. 

Important: If you have not yet created developer accounts, you will need to do so in order for your application to be rebuilt. For information on setting up your accounts, click here. The iOS and Google Play stores require each client to have a developer account in order to deploy new versions of your application into their stores. 

 

Posted by trevor.mackay  On Oct 01, 2019 at 6:03 AM