Introducing OmniFocus 2 for iPad!

by Ken Case on September 17, 2014

UPDATE: Our deepest apologies, everyone! OmniFocus 2 for iPad shipped with our test build expiration still in place, so it expired Friday evening. Version 2.0.1 was submitted Friday to fix the issue, and was approved Saturday afternoon. It will shortly be available as a free update in the App Store; if you’re not seeing it on your local device yet, please wait an hour or so and check again.

Once again, our sincerest apologies! The Omni Group has a no-questions-asked 30-day refund policy on all our apps. If you would like one, please contact sales@omnigroup.com.


Response timeline:

  • Friday, 5:46pm — Issue first reported by a customer.
  • Friday, 6:11pm — Ken (CEO) reproduces the problem and notifies the team, begins reviewing code with the team to identify where the problem lies.
  • Friday, 6:15pm — The problem is found to be that the new iPad 2.0 app’s expiration logic is reading the iPhone app’s test build flag rather than its own, which is why the iPad app’s test flag was correct but its expiration happened anyway.
  • Friday, 6:17pm — Team begins reviewing the 28 changes made to 2.0.1 since the initial 2.0 release to see whether they’re ready to include in an update. Determines that most are ready to go, but that the release has had insufficient testing and it will be safest and fastest to submit 2.0.1 with a single change fixing the expiration logic.
  • Friday, 6:23pm — 2.0 tag is branched to form the basis of the new 2.0.1 build. (Former 2.0.1 branch renamed to 2.0.2.)
  • Friday, 6:25pm — While engineers work on fixing the code, a public tweet is sent from @OmniFocus to tell our customers about the issue. Continue responding to all customers affected by the issue.
  • Friday, 6:35pmFixed code checked into the 2.0.1 branch, 2.0.1 tag created and build started on build server.
  • Friday, 6:37pm — While build proceeds on the build server, start defining new release on App Store with release notes containing an apology and explanation.
  • Friday, 6:47pm — Problem also fixed for the upcoming 2.0.2 release.
  • Friday, 6:48pmOmniFocus 2 for iPad pulled from the App Store until this is resolved. (The discounted Omni Productivity Pack will also be unavailable until this is resolved.)
  • Friday, 6:49pm — New 2.0.1 build completes.
  • Friday, 6:55pmNew 2.0.1 build signed and uploaded to the App Store.
  • Friday, 7:12pm — App Store processing completes, now waiting for review from Apple. Begin writing up request for an expedited review.
  • Friday, 7:16pmExpedited review request submitted to Apple.
  • Friday, 7:20pm — Updates posted to Twitter.
  • Friday, 7:44pm — Email autoresponders for OmniFocus are updated to explain the issue and our support humans notified; some return from their Friday evenings to start responding to customer messages on Twitter and email.
  • Friday, 10:58pm — Blog post updated to include an explanation of the issue.
  • Saturday, 1:27am — Hundreds of individual responses sent to customers over Twitter and email.
  • Saturday, 6:25am — Blog post updated to include this response timeline.
  • Saturday, 12:34pmThe 2.0.1 update has finished App Store review! Should start showing as a free update in the next hour or so. Our apologies again, and thank you so much for your patience.

How times change! When we introduced OmniFocus for iPad in the Summer of 2010, it was widely considered to have the best, most modern design of the three OmniFocus editions. So much so that when we set about building OmniFocus 2 for Mac, our top priority was to bring the design lessons we’d learned from the iPad app back to the Mac app.

But then Apple inspired us with iOS 7, and our priorities changed. We completely redesigned OmniFocus 2 for iPhone, then OmniFocus 2 for Mac. We started getting rave reviews for these new designs—and now, instead of constantly getting questions about how soon we would make the other editions match OmniFocus for iPad, those questions flipped to ask when we were going to update the iPad app to match the new designs in the other apps.

I’m very pleased to announce that the long wait is over—that (for the first time!) all three editions of OmniFocus have the same design language:

Screenshot of the Forecast perspective

Screenshot of the editor

Beyond its new design, OmniFocus 2 for iPad offers two great new iOS 8 extensions, interactive notifications so you can immediately complete or snooze a reminder, improved searching, and background syncing. And, of course, all of the great features pioneered in the original iPad app, such as the built-in Forecast and Review perspectives.

It’s a great upgrade—but we didn’t stop there! On the Mac, one of the features we offer in the Pro version of OmniFocus 2 is the ability to go beyond the built-in perspectives by creating your own custom perspectives. Customers have often asked if we would ever provide similar capabilities for iOS, and I’m pleased to share that we’ve finally done just that, in the optional Pro upgrade to OmniFocus 2 for iPad:

Screenshot of the Perspective editor

With Pro, you can create your own combinations of view settings, searches, and filters to see your work in exactly the right way. You can also arrange the top-level sidebar however you like, for quick access to your favorite perspectives.

Whether or not Pro is for you, we know you’ll enjoy all of the other new features OmniFocus 2 has to offer! OmniFocus 2 is now available for just $29.99, and its Pro upgrade is now available as an optional in-app purchase for $19.99.

For those of you who purchased the first version of OmniFocus for iPad, we have a very special deal: we appreciate the support you’ve given us through the years, and we’re showing our appreciation in a very concrete way by giving you the $19.99 Pro upgrade for free when you purchase version 2. Thank you for your support through the years!

Introducing OmniGraffle 2 for iPad!

by Ken Case on September 17, 2014

Last summer Apple introduced a completely new design for iOS 7, and when they shipped iOS 7 in Fall we were ready with three new apps: OmniFocus 2 for iPhone, OmniOutliner 2, and OmniPlan 2. With that work done, we turned our attention back to our Mac apps where we had several major updates to ship: OmniGraffle 6, OmniOutliner 4, and OmniFocus 2. Unfortunately, that left the last two of our iPad apps—OmniFocus and OmniGraffle—looking rather dated next to our other apps!

Well, I’m very pleased to announce that OmniGraffle 2 has now been completely redesigned to match the modern look of iOS:

Screenshot of a flowchart document

Screenshot of App IA document with stencils

As part of this work we’ve introduced a new style system to make it easier to set and apply visual styles based on favorite settings or matching the styles of other objects which are already on the canvas. There’s a new full-screen mode which lets you hide the interface controls completely—great for presentations or any other time you want to focus on your own work rather than the app’s controls. You can easily search for stencils shared by the community at our free online Stenciltown repository, or you can create your own stencils—using the built-in drawing tools to draw freehand shapes, or manipulating individual vertex points and handles to create Bézier curves:

Screenshot of editing a Bézier curve

For those of you with lots of documents, we’ve significantly improved document management. All of your documents can be synced with the cloud as in version 1, but now you can also organize them into folders, filter by type, and search by name. With document templates, it’s easier than ever to hit the ground running on a new project—and your templates also sync with the cloud, which means you can easily share them with the rest of your team.

Screenshot of the new document picker

With all of the above, we think OmniGraffle 2 is an incredibly strong upgrade. But we didn’t stop there! OmniGraffle 2 also has an optional Pro upgrade which brings many professional features that were previously only available in our Mac app:

  • Microsoft® Visio® import/export: Collaborate with Microsoft Windows® users. OmniGraffle Pro imports the following Visio file types: Drawing files (.vsd, .vdx, and .vsdx), Templates (.vst, .vtx, and .vstx), and Stencils (.vss, .vsx, and .vssx). OmniGraffle Pro exports your drawings in .vdx format, which can be opened by Visio 2013 and earlier.
  • Shape Combinations: Combine two or more objects on the Canvas to create custom shapes. Don’t like the combination you’ve made? That’s okay; you can also uncombine objects to restore them to their former selves.
  • Shared Layers: Share layers with multiple canvases in the same OmniGraffle document.
  • Tables: Merge two or more objects to create a table, and then resize the table to add additional rows or columns to suit your needs.
  • Custom Data: Assign names, add descriptive details and notes, and add custom key-value data to every single object on the canvas—or to the canvas itself.

Whether you choose the Pro upgrade or not, we think OmniGraffle 2 is an incredible upgrade—and we’re glad to finally be able to share it with all of you! OmniGraffle 2 is now available for $49.99, and its Pro upgrade is now available as an in-app purchase for an additional $49.99.

Now, for those of you who invested in the first version of OmniGraffle for iPad, I have some great news! We really appreciate the investment you made in our new app on a new platform (which shipped the day the iPad launched!), and we’ve decided to show you our appreciation in a very concrete way by giving you the $49.99 Pro upgrade for free when you purchase version 2. We hope you enjoy all of the powerful features we’ve added to OmniGraffle 2, and we thank you for your continuing support!

New OmniFocus extensions for iOS 8

by Ken Case on September 17, 2014

It’s hard to believe that it’s only been three months since Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference. We had just finished shipping OmniFocus 2.0 for Mac—a huge release for us—and suddenly we were on the receiving end of a firehose of information from Apple about iOS 8 and Yosemite and Swift. All three were incredibly exciting, but the one which would immediately change our app development was iOS 8.

With iOS 8, Apple gave us new ways to interact with the operating system and with other apps. For the first time ever, we could provide extensions which could run inside other apps. We could add Today extensions to Notification Center. We could build new Sharing options to easily capture content shared by other apps. We could share documents between apps without making extra copies that get out of date. And even in places where our code wasn’t running, we now had more flexibility—like the ability to provide interactive notifications with multiple choices. All that and much more. Far more than we had time to adopt in one summer—particularly since we also had two major app upgrades to ship for iPad: OmniFocus 2 and OmniGraffle 2.

Fast forward a few (very busy!) months, and iOS 8 is finally right around the corner—and the iPad and iPhone editions of OmniFocus 2 are both ready with two great new extensions. The new OmniFocus Sharing extension will let you capture content from Safari and other apps, and with the new OmniFocus Today extension it’s easier than ever to get a grip on your day’s commitments:

Screenshot of the Today extension on iPhone

These new extensions are just a taste of what’s now possible with iOS 8. I’m looking forward to doing even more with extensions in our apps—and I’m also looking forward to seeing what other developers have been cooking up over the summer!

Just a short bit about a few apps and iOS 8

by Derek R. on September 12, 2014

It’s been a few months since we pulled OmniFocus for iPad and OmniGraffle for iPad from the App Store, but we’re less than a week away from the big iOS 8 launch.

What are we doing, and where are the apps?

Well, we’re very happy to share that OmniFocus 2 for iPad and OmniGraffle 2 for iPad have been submitted to Apple for review. And they’re both incredible. OmniGraffle 2 is super fast. And there’s a lot that’s new: inspectors, drawing tools, AirDrop support, shape combinations, Visio support, and more.

OmniGraffle for iPad

OmniFocus 2 for iPad has some great new features and a brand new look. We’ve added a few useful extensions, too, like Sharing and a Today view. You can even create perspectives in Pro.

OmniFocus for iPad

And finally. Expect each of those extensions in OmniFocus 2 for iPad in OmniFocus 2 for iPhone. As a free update, of course.

We’re really excited to get this stuff out there to you!

Oh: shout out to my friend OmniGraffle 6.1 for Mac. Dangerously close to a Public Test!

Welcome to Stenciltown!

by Ken Case on September 12, 2014

One of the wonderful things about OmniGraffle is that it’s incredibly easy to build stencils: you just take any content that you might put in a normal document, create a new stencil document, and add that content to it.

It’s also very easy to download stencils from the Internet: you can go to a website and download a stencil (like Twitter Bootstrap 3.0 from Viget), open that stencil in OmniGraffle and you’re good to go.

But you could only download those stencils if you knew where to find them, and unfortunately they’re scattered across the web.

Enter Stenciltown:

Screenshot of Stenciltown

Stenciltown makes it easy to find free OmniGraffle stencils which have been shared by the community. You can browse and search the collection through its web interface, and once you’ve found a stencil you’d like to use it’s as easy as ever to download and use.

You can also search Stenciltown from within OmniGraffle itself, both on Mac and iPad:

Searching Stenciltown in Mac and iPad apps

We think being able to search for community stencils within the app is important; it lets people who are using the app find what they’re looking for right away (and it helps new customers find stencils even when they haven’t yet heard of Stenciltown).

If you have a stencil you’d like to share with the rest of the OmniGraffle community, you’ll find the option to “Submit a Stencil” at the top of the page. You’ll need to provide the stencil file, a preview image, and some basic details about the stencil. After a short review process, your stencil will become freely available to all of the OmniGraffle community, both in OmniGraffle itself and through the Stenciltown website.

We look forward to seeing you in Stenciltown!