Omni Newsletter Spring 2023

Spring is in the air here in Seattle, which means blooming flowers, gusting wind, April showers, and a team abuzz with the latest updates from the Omni Group.

We like to take the opportunity at the beginning of the new year to buckle down and tackle big projects, and this year the Roadmap is clear: it’s OmniFocus or Bust!

We’re heads down in the home stretch, laser-focused on the finish line, so without further ado…

OmniFocus 4 Dev Update

If you’ve been testing OmniFocus 4, you’ll be familiar with this graphic now appearing in a Release Notes section near you:

A screenshot showing the current OmniFocus 4 progress

To explain — the Feature Freeze and Design Freeze milestones are by far the most time consuming, with the remaining four occurring in rapid succession (and in some cases, overlapping).

We’re almost done with the Design Freeze milestone for OmniFocus 4, which will free up resources to tackle the remaining engineering work; and meanwhile, both documentation and localization are already in progress.

At this stage the app is coming together on all platforms with a truly unified vision, and we’re beyond excited to share it with you as soon as we possibly can.

OmniFocus for the Web Compatibility Test Begins

Speaking of OmniFocus, we would be remiss not to mention that its web-based companion is also receiving an update along with the release of OmniFocus 4 universally for iPad, iPhone, and Mac.

That update’s newly supported features recently went into public test, and are now available to try for all OmniFocus 4 testers with a subscription to OmniFocus for the Web.

For details on the new features and how to test them, see this post on the Omni Blog.

OmniGraffle Testing Gets Tutorialized

We would like to thank everyone who’s participated in the OmniGraffle 8 TestFlight so far, and remind folks who are interested that you can sign up to join the testing pool here.

A screenshot showing the current progress made on OmniGraffle 8

As indicated by the progress chart, we’re most of the way through the Feature Freeze milestone! And on the topic of features, we’ve created a brand new tutorial for testers to help orient you in the new world of OmniGraffle 8’s latest UI changes.

If you’re part of the test group and would like some pointers on recent updates, changes, and improvements, check the latest build of the app for a document that appears on launch to help you get your bearings.

Enterprise, Engage (A Clearer Purchasing Process)

Part of the unified vision for Omni’s products over the past several years has been to make things simpler and more streamlined, without sacrificing power or flexibility. That process has extended from our app design philosophy through to how we offer our products for sale; we want to make sure you have the best experience possible when you choose to get productive with us.

To that end, we’ve recently made some changes to improve the experience for both our Enterprise and individual customers alike: we’ve converted our Enterprise App Store SKUs to unlisted on the App Store.

While we generally recommend that business customers purchase directly from us in order to take advantage of our upgrade discounts, volume discounts, and SAML licensing, some prefer using Apple Business Manager or Apple Education Manager to license our apps from the App Store through MDM, and that means they need our Enterprise App Store SKUs.

While we’re happy to provide these, a downside of providing Enterprise SKUs via the App Store is that it muddies search results: a search for OmniFocus results in both “OmniFocus” and “OmniFocus for Enterprise”, a distinction that isn’t clear or relevant to many customers.

That’s why we’ve decided to unlist our Enterprise SKUs from the App Store. The apps remain available for anyone who needs them, but no longer confuse people who find them accidentally. Anyone who is looking for the Enterprise SKUs can get the direct links by contacting us; we’re keeping all the current licensing flexibility, while simplifying the purchasing experience for people new to our apps. We think it’s a win win!

Highlights from The Omni Show

We’re all about productivity at the Omni Group, and that extends to our podcast, where we feature voices from throughout the community — both inside Omni and out — who use our products to help them do some really cool stuff.

If you haven’t been listening lately, we’ve got you covered with some recent episodes that we think you’ll enjoy:

WWDC on the Horizon

Apple recently announced the dates for their next Worldwide Developer’s Conference: the time when we all learn what’s coming next for Apple’s platforms, and just how much our plans will be affected over the summer as we move to support the new features of the upcoming operating systems.

This year from June 5–9 we’ll be glued to the news from Cupertino, absorbing as much knowledge as we possibly can. Omni CEO Ken Case will be in the neighborhood for the proceedings, so if you plan to attend, feel free to say hi!

Keep an eye on the Omni Blog after the event for an update to our Roadmap, once we’ve had the chance to digest a bit — we look forward to seeing you then.

Until Next Time

We have a busy couple of months ahead, so without further fanfare we’ll get back to work. Thanks for reading this latest issue of the Omni Newsletter, and we’ll be back with you after WWDC with a fresh helping of all the latest updates from the Omni Group!

Until then, we’ll see you around the internet and, of course, on the Omni Blog.

Stay warm, stay safe, and we’ll see you next time.

Want to catch up on past newsletters? Check out the archive here.