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HippoRemote Pro 3.4

with 9 comments

Hi folks! HippoRemote Pro 3.4 has been approved by Apple and is now available in the App Store. I intended to get this update out sooner, but during final testing a few new issues were reported. Though it would delay the update by a couple weeks, I felt the issues were important enough that they needed to be addressed promptly. Thank you all for your patience!

IPHONE 5

The banner feature for this update is support for iPhone 5’s taller screen. Though it may not seem like a lot, that little extra bit of screen real estate really does make a difference. For example, the splitscreen trackpad + keyboard no longer feels cramped. And the fullscreen keyboard can finally show you what you’re typing even when you’ve switched to the arrow or function keys.

IOS 6

With each new update to iOS, Apple adds new features, tweaks existing features, and removes some older features. This is the reality of progress. In order to do newer, better things, older things have to be discarded. This is true for apps too. HippoRemote Pro 3.4 now requires iOS 4.3 or newer. Dropping support for older versions of iOS, I could modernize key portions of HippoRemote, resulting in a smoother, more responsive and more performant experience.

TRACKPAD

The trackpad, in particular, received some significant improvements. First, the tracking of small finger movements has been greatly enhanced. Previously, small, slow finger movements could result in a jerky mouse pointer. This should be all but eliminated now.

Additionally, tap-to-click is now more responsive. There used to be a small delay between when you finished your tap and when the click would register on your computer. The update greatly reduces the delay, improving the fluidity of trackpad use.

NAMED CONNECTIONS

A number of folks have requested an option to assign a connection a friendlier name than the IP address. This doesn’t apply to Mac users, because HippoRemote can detect the name of your Mac. But for folks controlling multiple PCs, a list of IP addresses is pretty impenetrable. HippoRemote Pro 3.4 finally lets you give each connection a nicer name. Looking back, I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to add this option. Thanks to those of you who patiently outwaited by obtuseness.

UPSIDE-DOWN APP

Another popular request is support for using the app when your device is upside down. A number of you who email me have various dongles attached to your iPhones dock connectors or the headphone jacks. Rather than forcing you to keep flipping your devices around while switching apps, HippoRemote Pro will now work up the upside-down orientation. You will need to enable the Auto-Rotate setting in the app, though.

WRAP UP

That covers the more notable changes in the app. If you enjoy using HippoRemote, I’d really appreciate it if you would leave a five star review in iTunes. I’d love it even more if you would tell others about the app via Facebook, Twitter or the good old-fashioned way.

If you don’t like something, or just want to give me some suggestions, you can get in touch with me via email. My email address is on HippoRemote’s support page (http://hipporemote.com/support). Twitter (@HippoRemote) is also an option, but I find it’s pretty hard to talk about features in 140 characters or less.

Enjoy and happy HippoRemoting!

=====

ADDITIONAL BUG FIXES:

  • Fixed connection errors when using a blank password.

  • Fixed unresponsive macro button.

  • Fixed bug that could cause Dropbox syncing to stall.

  • Fixed bug in profile editor that prevented editing of a deleted button.

Written by Albert

November 5th, 2012 at 4:58 pm

Posted in News

HippoRemote Pro 3.3

with 28 comments

Hi again! Wanted to let you all know that HippoRemote Pro 3.3 is now available in the App Store. It’s only been a month since the last update, but I managed to squeeze a number of useful enhancements into this release. Read on for more details.

LION AND SCREEN SHARING

As most of you probably know, Apple released OS X Lion last month. It’s a big update and a number of features were significantly modified. Screen Sharing in particular received a major update with the addition of multi-user sharing. While incredibly convenient, multi-user sharing unfortunately broke compatibility with HippoRemote.

I’m happy to say that the 3.3 update restores Screen Sharing support and makes it even better! Instead of fiddling with VNC settings, you can now connect to your Mac using your user account and password. The entire setup process has been simplified to one step — Check the box next to Screen Sharing in your Mac’s System Preferences.

PER-CONNECTION PROFILES

If you use HippoRemote to control multiple computers, your favorites list is probably includes a bunch of apps that aren’t installed on the current machine. If you have both Macs and PCs, the situation is likely even worse.

In 3.3, your favorites are now stored per connection. So no more jumbled profiles. Just a nice clean list for each computer you control.

IPAD 2X MODE

For those of you running HippoRemote on your iPads in 2x mode, the trackpad has probably been a bear to use because the sensitivity is out of whack. I’ve added a setting called “2x Adjustment” that should properly tune the sensitivity and make the trackpad usable again. I tried to make this setting automatic, but unfortunately apps can’t detect when they are running in 2x mode, so you’ll have to manually enable this.

RIGHT-CLICK ISSUES

A number of users have reported that their right mouse button has stopped working. As it turns out, in a recent software update for Snow Leopard users, Apple flipped the middle and right mouse buttons for Screen Sharing. I don’t know if this was an accident or a permanent change, but if your right mouse button is unresponsive, there’s now a “Swap Buttons” setting that should restore the proper behavior.

WRAP UP

That covers the big ticket items. As always, each update to HippoRemote also includes a bundle of small tweaks, edits, and fixes. The more complete list of changes is below.

If you like HippoRemote and the changes and updates, I’d really appreciate it if you would leave a five star review in iTunes. I’d love it even more if you would tell others about the app via Facebook, Twitter or the good old-fashioned way.

If you don’t like something, or just want to give me some suggestions, you can get in touch with me via email. My email address is on HippoRemote’s support page (http://hipporemote.com/support). Twitter (@HippoRemote) is also an option, but I find it’s pretty hard to talk about features in 140 characters or less.

Enjoy and happy HippoRemoting!

=====

NEW FEATURES, ENHANCEMENTS & TWEAKS:

  • Improved support for connecting via Screen Sharing on Macs. In particular, connecting to OS X Lion via Screen Sharing is now fully supported.

  • Your list of favorite profiles is now stored per connection. No more jumbled favorites for those of you controlling multiple computers!

  • Launch on Connect setting is now enabled by default. HippoRemote will automatically launch the app corresponding to the current profile when a connection is completed. (HippoConnect/HippoVNC only)

  • Added “Reverse Swiping” setting for easily reversing swiping directions on gesturepads.

  • Added “2x Adjustment” setting when running on an iPad. This scales the trackpad sensitivity to make mouse movements more natural when running in 2x mode.

  • Added “Swap Buttons” setting for swapping middle and right mouse buttons. Snow Leopard users experiencing issues with right clicking should enable this setting.

  • Added support for auto-discovery of MAC addresses, easing setup of Wake-on-LAN.

  • Added new gesture shortcut – swipe horizontally across Profile button to clear the current profile.

  • Added WebDAV support for uploading/editing profiles on the device.

BUG FIXES:

  • Fixed connection errors on IPv6 networks.

  • Fixed broken Reverse Scrolling option.

  • Fixed visual glitches when panning between keyboards.

  • Fixed memory issue in Boxee/Plex/XBMC gesturepads when handling very large images.

  • Fixed bug prevented custom actions for 3-finger gestures.

Written by Albert

August 21st, 2011 at 2:29 pm

Posted in News

HippoRemote Pro 3.2

with 4 comments

Hi folks! HippoRemote Pro 3.2 has been approved by Apple and is now available in the App Store!

SPEED

The biggest change in this update is a major rewrite of HippoRemote’s networking code. This means smoother mouse tracking, more fluid gestures and more responsive typing. But the most noticeable impact is dramatically improved connection times. I’ve managed to speed up connection times 2x and as much as 5x in certain scenarios. If you’re like me and multitask while you watch TV, this means that you can get in, out, and back in to the app faster than ever.

These speed improvements apply to the Fast Reconnect feature as well, which was already pretty darned fast. In 3.2, Fast Reconnects can complete so quickly that you may not even notice that it happened at all!

All this speed doesn’t come without risk, however. The old networking code was tried-and-true, having proven itself with solid performance in a variety of environments. The new networking code is just that &mdash new. I’ve tested it as much as I possibly can in my “lab”, but it hasn’t had to face the wilderness of all your networks and computers. So if you run into some odd behavior, please let me know. I’m hopeful that problems will be minimal, but I ask for your patience while I work out any kinks that arise.

SPECIAL FUNCTION KEYS

The other big feature in this update is support for special function keys. A lot of you write in to ask if HippoRemote supports the media keys on Windows keyboards, or the special feature keys on Apple keyboards. I’m happy to say that with 3.2, the answer is a resounding YES.

You can access the special function keys from the F-key screen of HippoRemote Pro’s keyboard. If you’re running HippoVNC on your Windows PC, or HippoConnect on your Mac, you will see a SPECIAL button that toggles between standard f-keys and the special function keys.

HIPPOCONNECT?

Yes, there is one more thing. Effective today, I’m replacing HippoVNC on the Mac with HippoConnect. One of the problems with HippoVNC on the Mac was that it conflicted with Screen Sharing. HippoConnect solves that problem. You can run Screen Sharing simultaneously with HippoConnect without issue.

This is especially important for OS X Lion. Apple is changing a lot of things in Lion and Screen Sharing is no exception. The new per-user screen sharing feature in particular is great for letting multiple people access a single Mac, but it wreaks a bit of havoc on remote control apps like HippoRemote. I’ll try to work out some of the issues with Screen Sharing over time, but for the moment, HippoConnect is the sole supported option for Lion.

The good news is that the networking improvements that I made on the iPhone are also in HippoConnect. So using the two in tandem is ULTRA fast. If you’re using HippoRemote with a Mac, you really should switch to HippoConnect.

WRAP UP

So that’s about all I have to say on the major features of the 3.2 update. However, as with every update to HippoRemote, there are a ton of small tweaks and fixes. The more complete list of changes is below.

If you like HippoRemote and the changes and updates, I’d really appreciate it if you would leave a five star review in iTunes. I’d love it even more if you would tell others about the app via Facebook, Twitter or the good old-fashioned way.

If you don’t like something, or just want to give me some suggestions, you can get in touch with me via email. My email address is on HippoRemote’s support page (http://hipporemote.com/support). Twitter (@HippoRemote) is also an option, but I find it’s pretty hard to talk about features in 140 characters or less.

Enjoy and happy HippoRemoting!

=====

MAJOR NEW FEATURES & CHANGES:

  • Completely revamped networking. Connection times are now 2-5x faster!

  • Added “special” button to keyboard for accessing additional functions including:

    • Volume controls, playback controls & sleep.
    • Screen brightness controls, Exposé and Dashboard on Macs.
    • Back, forward, home, and favorites buttons on Windows.
  • Added support for HippoConnect, our brand new, Lion-compatible desktop client.

OTHER ENHANCEMENTS & ADJUSTMENTS:

  • Tweaked tracking momentum to not be so crazy.

  • Thumb scrolling now has momentum/inertia.

  • Added Connect on Launch setting – launch current profile when connection is established.

  • Swipe to switch between arrow keys and function keys.

  • Smoother scrolling in lists in tables, particularly on iPhone 4.

  • Added bounce effect when swiping to switch between controlpads and keyboards.

  • Other small interface refinements and optimizations sprinkled throughout the app.

BUG FIXES:

  • Fixed potential trackpad resizing problem when rotating from landscape to portrait.

  • Fixed issue where selecting a profile would not add it to favorites.

  • Fixed bug that could cause keyboard buttons to temporarily disappear.

  • Fixed rare stuck toolbar problem.

Written by Albert

July 18th, 2011 at 6:24 pm

Posted in News

HippoRemote Pro 3.1

with 2 comments

It took me longer than I expected to finish the update, but HippoRemote Pro 3.1 has been approved by Apple and is now available in the App Store!

GESTUREPAD

The focus of this update is the gesturepad. I added the gesturepad to HippoRemote back in version 2.0. I wanted to make controlling your computer feel more iPhone-like. On the iPhone, we interact with apps primarily through flicks and swipes. Taps are less frequent and repeated tapping is downright alien. I’m not saying that tapping is bad, but it feels far more natural to swipe through a list than to repeatedly tap an arrow key.

The gesturepad enabled this more natural usage and it was fantastic, especially for apps and websites designed around simple control schemes, like Hulu Desktop, Clicker.TV and YouTube Leanback. For more complex apps, however, using the gesturepad would quickly become a struggle. Apps designed for remote controls with lots of buttons were just not a good fit for gesturepad control. It was simply too hard to squeeze in all the necessary controls.

With the 3.1 update, I’m addressing the issue by adding modes to the gesturepad. Take the new Windows Media Center gesturepad as an example. There’s now an arrowpad mode for swiping through menus and lists. Once you’ve selected something, you tap a button and switch to playpad mode. Now, your flicks and swipes skip you forwards/backwards or fast forwards/rewinds the video. It feels completely natural and is so easy to do that you don’t even need to look down at the device in your hand.

For Boxee, XBMC, and Plex, I take modes even further. Because these three apps share a protocol for communicating their status, the gesturepad can detect whether you’re browsing through your media library or watching a movie and switch modes automatically. It’s totally awesome.

But that’s not all. I also added the ability to customize which controls are assigned to which gestures. You can do this on the fly, directly in the app. So if you don’t like the default controls, you can tailor them to your specific preferences. Just tap on the settings icon in the gesturepad and edit away. And if you’ve linked HippoRemote with your Dropbox account, all your changes are automatically backed up to the cloud, ready for syncing to your other devices.

UPDATE YOUR PROFILES

New users will get the enhanced gesturepads right away. But if you’re updating to 3.1 from a previous version, you will need to update your profiles as well. To do this, go to the profile selection screen, tap on the action button in the upper right, and choose to add profiles. This will take you to our online profile library where you can download the latest profiles to your iPhone.

The gesturepad isn’t accessible from every profile. I’ve found that it makes the most sense for controlling apps that rely heavily on the arrow keys. For apps that rely on mouse control, HippoRemote’s trackpad is still the way to go. But I could be wrong! If you think a particular profile could benefit from a gesturepad, the great news is that you can take advantage all the profile editing features in HippoRemote to add one yourself!

ONE MORE THING

There is one other pretty significant new feature in HippoRemote Pro 3.1. You can now assign buttons and macros to access URLs. This is quite useful for a couple things.

First, I think this will be really helpful to EventGhost users. Instead of assigning keyboard shortcuts to your EventGhost actions, you can instead map them to URLs using the web server plugin. No more worrying about keyboard conflicts with other apps.

Second, you can use this feature to control other non-PC devices on your network. For example, if you have a networked AV receiver that powers your speakers, you can create macros to control the master volume. Super super useful.

Creating one of these macros is pretty straightforward, just put the URL you want to access between some brackets like so:

[http://{IP address of device}/some_url]

If you want to target the computer that HippoRemote is connected to:

[http://localhost/some_url]

And if you want to send an HTTP POST command, just add a space after the URL and then your POST body:

[http://{IP address of device}/post_url POST_BODY]

This feature is still experimental and like all things involving networking, there are many potential gotchas. If you run into any issues or have questions, please don’t hesitate to send me an email.

WRAP UP

That just about covers the two main features in the 3.1 update. However, as with every update to HippoRemote, there are a ton of tweaks, fixes and behind the scenes optimizations. The full list of changes is below.

I hope you like the changes I’ve made. As always, I’m eager for any feedback you may have. The best way to get in touch with me is via the email address on our support page (http://hipporemote.com/support). Or drop me a line on Twitter (@HippoRemote).

Enjoy and happy HippoRemoting!

=====

MAJOR NEW FEATURES & CHANGES:

  • Overhauled Boxee/Plex/XBMC gesturepads. Download updated Boxee/Plex/XBMC profiles to enable the new features.

    • The gesturepad listens to feedback from Boxee/Plex/XBMC and automatically adapts the controls to what you are doing – navigating menus, watching video, or listening to music.
    • Controls can be edited directly in the app by tapping on the gesturepad settings button.
    • Edits are synced to Dropbox.
    • Smoother animations and performance.
    • More efficient network usage.
  • Overhauled gesturepads for other profiles. Download updated profiles to enable the new features.

    • Gesturepads can now have multiple modes. Tap or swipe icons to switch between them.
    • Controls can be edited directly in the app by tapping on the gesturepad settings button.
    • Edits are synced to Dropbox.
    • Gesturepads will now display any wallpaper you’ve selected.
  • Macros now accept URLs.

    • Send HTTP GET and POST requests.
    • Send requests to your programs on your PC, like EventGhost.
    • Send requests to other devices on your network, like network-enabled AV receivers.

OTHER ENHANCEMENTS & POWER USER SHORTCUTS:

  • Added an action button to the profile selection screen. Tap it to activate the profile editor, manage favorites, add new profiles, or delete unused profiles.

  • Added a macro to toggle splitscreen keyboard: [KEYBOARD:SPLIT]

  • Swipe to quickly switch between keyboard’s arrow keys and function keys.

  • Long press on profile button to launch current app.

  • Added caching to make button pads load faster, particularly on older devices.

  • Added optimizations to enable smoother animations throughout the app.

  • Added advanced trackpad settings for customizing 2, 3, and 4-finger trackpad actions.

  • Increased repeat rate when buttons are held.

BUG FIXES:

  • Fixed issues when used in conjunction with a hardware keyboard.

  • Fixed potential crash when editing a newly created macro.

  • Fixed issue where a favorite could not be reordered to the bottom row.

  • Fixed issue where a macro could not activate a named gamepad.

  • Gamepad edits now properly sync to Dropbox.

  • Other small, miscellaneous tweaks and fixes.

Written by Albert

May 13th, 2011 at 11:18 am

Posted in News

HippoVNC 0.3.5 for Mac

with 2 comments

Hi folks. I’ve uploaded a new version of HippoVNC for Mac to the website. I’ve gotten a few reports that the changes I made to mouse tracking in the last update were causing erratic behavior. I haven’t been able to reproduce this on my own Macs, but I’m rolling back those changes until I figure out what’s going on.

If you’ve been seeing weirdness with the trackpad, then grab this update here. Let me know in the comments if it fixes things. Also, it would help me out a great deal if you could let me know what kind of Mac you have, what version of OS X it runs, and what kind of mouse you’re using.

If you’re running HippoVNC in the background as a system server, be sure to stop the server first (via HippoVNC’s preferences) before installing the update.

Download HippoVNC for Mac.

CHANGELOG

  • 0.3.5
    • [CHANGED] Revert mouse handling changes due to reports of erratic trackpad behavior.

Written by Albert

January 10th, 2011 at 9:51 pm

Posted in News

HippoRemote Pro 3.0.2

without comments

Pro 3.0.2 is approved, so grab the update!

In my haste to release the last update, I created a new bug that affects iPhone 3G and iPod touch 2G owners. This release fixes that bug. It also fixes a long-standing issue with poor connection performance on devices where Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are simultaneously active. Hopefully this will solve connection headaches for quite a few people.



WHAT’S CHANGED IN 3.0.2?

BUG FIXES:
* Fixes a bug that cause some buttons to become unresponsive on non-multitasking devices.
* Improves connection performance and reliability on devices where Bluetooth is turned on.

Written by Albert

December 14th, 2010 at 3:56 pm

Posted in News

HippoRemote LITE 2.0

without comments

I’m a day late on this, but I’m happy to announce that HippoRemote LITE 2.0 is available for download in the App Store. Like Pro, it now requires iOS 4.0 or greater.

My goal with LITE is to make it the very best free keyboard & mouse app in the App Store. Using an iPhone as a keyboard/mouse isn’t for everyone, but if it’s something you want to try, at no cost, I want HippoRemote LITE to be a no brainer. It should be the easiest to use, the best performing, the best looking — everything.

Version 2.0 is a big step towards that goal. I brought the brand new look of Pro into LITE. Designed by Adam Betts, it’s simply gorgeous. I also brought along all the trackpad usability enhancements, including thumb scrolling. Thumb scrolling may not seem like a big deal, but once you’ve used it, you’ll wish you had it everywhere.

Coupled with the existing features — multi-touch trackpad with pinch-to-zoom, international keyboard support, fast reconnect, wake-on-LAN — these new enhancements make LITE the most feature-rich app of its kind. Most competing apps don’t even give you keyboard and trackpad functionality. Just one or the other. How are neutered apps like that even usable?

LITE isn’t a neutered app. I think it’s the best free app in it’s class. Give it a try and I think you’ll agree. If you like it a lot, take a look at Pro. If not, let me know what I can do to make it better!



WHAT’S NEW & IMPROVED IN 2.0?

LOOK & FEEL:
* Total visual overhaul designed by Adam Betts.
* Better resizing of images for custom wallpapers.
* Improved Retina Display support.

SPLIT SCREEN MODE:
* Now hides the status bar to give you a little more screen space.

USABILITY:
* Added thumb scrolling.
* Drag on trackpad button to click-and-hold, just like on a physical mouse.

GESTUREPAD:
* Added support for XBMC.
* Will launch Boxee or XBMC when activated.

MISCELLANEOUS:
* Improved reliability of fast reconnect.
* Bug fixes.

ADDITION BY SUBTRACTION:
* Removed in-app Twitter client.

Written by Albert

December 8th, 2010 at 12:31 am

Posted in News

HippoRemote Pro 3.0.1

without comments

Thanks to Apple for a quick approval of HippoRemote Pro 3.0.1. This update fixes a bug that caused a crash on startup for some users. So go get it! Full changelog below.



WHAT’S CHANGED IN 3.0.1?

BUG FIXES:
* Fixes a crash on startup that affected some users after updating.
* Fix power button covering delete button on profiles screen.
* Fix potential crash when tapping a launch button on favorites screen.

MISCELLANEOUS:
* User is prompted whether to overwrite or rename when re-downloading an existing profile.

Written by Albert

December 7th, 2010 at 7:09 pm

Posted in News

HippoRemote Pro 3.0

with 3 comments

HippoRemote Pro 3.0 is approved and available in the App Store for purchase. It requires iOS 4.0 or greater and is a free update for existing users. A full list of changes is below, but I wanted to spend a little time on the development process for this update.

The theme of version 3.0 is refinement. Since the initial 1.0 release almost a year and a half ago, I’ve updated Pro over a dozen times, adding a bevy of new features. Some of these worked out great. Others not so much. But the focus was always to expand what the app could do.

For 3.0, it was time to stop focusing on features and return to focusing on usability. I wanted to get back to the basics and apply all that I’d learned since the app’s initial release – from my own usage and from your feedback. I wanted to make using the app as fluid and effortless as possible.

That doesn’t mean that there are no new features in 3.0. It just means that they did’t feel like new features. Focusing on usability highlighted areas where missing functionality made the app more difficult or more awkward. Adding the functionality was just filling in something that was missing, rather than adding something new.

One other thing I learned during the development of 3.0 is that usability and aesthetics go hand in hand. Up until now, I’ve tried to use standard iPhone interface elements whenever possible to make Pro feel more consistent with other apps. But sometimes, the standard interface elements are just not a good fit and rolling your own UI is the way to go. In these scenarios, it’s important for the custom UI to have great aesthetics. Ugly UI, even with identical functionality, detracts from usability for the simple reason that if it looks bad, you don’t want to use it! With the help of Adam Betts, I think the new UI in 3.0 achieves great aesthetics. I also think it’s a big step forward in usability. I hope you feel that way too!



WHAT’S CHANGED IN 3.0?

LOOK & FEEL:
* Total visual overhaul designed by Adam Betts.
* Every profile updated. Download the updates from our online repository.

SPLIT SCREEN MODE:
* By popular request! Simultaneous keyboard + trackpad access.
* Long press keyboard button to toggle.

PROFILE EDITOR:
* Swipe across row on Profile screen to access.
* Tweak existing profiles.
* Create new profiles using templates or other profiles.

DROPBOX SUPPORT:
* Backup your profiles and macros.
* Sync to other devices.
* Edits auto-sync to Dropbox.com.
* Use Twitter-style pull-to-refresh to initiate a manual sync.

TRACKPAD ENHANCEMENTS:
* Swipe left/right to switch controlpads.
* Swipe up/down to hide controlpad.
* Swipe up on bottom bar to access volume controls.
* Long press on bottom bar for quick access to global macros.
* Drag left/right on bottom bar to start thumb scrolling.
* Drag on trackpad button to click-and-hold, just like on a physical mouse.

MISCELLANEOUS:
* Improved gesturepad support for Boxee, Plex, and XBMC.
* Better gamepad support for Macs. Requires newest HippoVNC.
* New setting to disable shake access to global macros.
* Long press to activate macro and return to trackpad.
* Improved sizing of custom wallpapers.
* Retina Display support for custom wallpapers.
* Improved reliability of fast reconnect.
* Bug fixes.

ADDITION BY SUBTRACTION:
* Removed in-app Twitter client.

Written by Albert

November 29th, 2010 at 8:20 pm

Posted in News

HippoVNC 0.3.4 for Mac

without comments

Wanted to let you all know that I’ve uploaded a new version of HippoVNC for Mac to the website. I highly recommend that everyone download and install this update.

http://hipporemote.com/mac_setup

The big news is that I’ve finally found and fixed a long standing bug that would cause HippoRemote to become completely unresponsive. Special thanks to those users who submitted detailed bug reports. I wouldn’t have figured things out without your help!

I also made some changes under the hood to improve mouse tracking. The trackpad should now work better with fullscreen apps and games. And I got rid of the shakiness in the mouse tracking when zoomed in on the screen.

If you’re running HippoVNC in the background as a system server, be sure to stop the server first (via HippoVNC’s preferences) before installing the update. And as always, send any questions, feedback, bug reports to hipporemote at robohippo dot com.


CHANGELOG

  • 0.3.4
    • [FIXED] Keyboard input hangs connection after adding/removing a screen.
    • [CHANGED] Revised mouse handling to improve support for games and other fullscreen apps.
    • [CHANGED] Reduced mouse jitter when zoomed in.

Written by Albert

November 17th, 2010 at 12:50 am

Posted in News

HippoRemote Pro 2.3: More Faster

with 3 comments

HippoRemote Pro 2.3 has been approved by Apple and should be available on the App Store shortly (if it’s not already there)! There are a ton of significant changes, particularly under-the-hood speed and performance improvements. But there are a number of noteworthy new features as well. Let’s go over them!

FAST APP SWITCHING & FAST RECONNECT:

The biggest new feature is support for iOS 4 multitasking. How multitasking works on the iPhone has been covered extensively by other sites, but the key point is that it’s a bit different than what you and I are used to on Macs and PCs.

You still can’t quite run multiple apps simultaneously on an iPhone. But with a feature called Fast App Switching, Apple has provided a means to greatly reduce the delay when switching between apps. Prior to iOS 4, switching apps meant quitting the current app, launching a new app, and waiting for it to load. Switching frequently meant you spent an inordinate amount of time waiting for apps to finish launching. In iOS 4, Apple has eliminated the wait. Instead of quitting and relaunching, apps are frozen when you leave them and “reheated” when you return. Since you don’t have to relaunch the app, you can pick up exactly where you left off with minimal delay.

Fast App Switching is relatively straightforward to implement for basic apps, but it’s a bit trickier for HippoRemote since it has to maintain a connection to your computer. Keeping the connection open while frozen is disallowed by Apple and unnecessarily drains your battery. But having to choose a connection every time you return to HippoRemote is annoying. To solve this, we created a feature called Fast Reconnect. HippoRemote detects that you’re switching back and forth between apps and saves off connection information so that it can automatically reconnect you super quickly.

Fast Reconnect is extremely fast and extremely convenient. So convenient, in fact, that we brought it to non-iOS 4 devices. Even if you’re using an older iPhone or iPod touch that doesn’t have multitasking, you’ll still be able to switch in & out of HippoRemote quickly.

DISCONNECT BUTTON:

Fast App Switching and Fast Reconnect is great, but they do introduce one piece of complexity for people who control multiple computers. Previously, to connect to a different computer, you simply restarted HippoRemote and picked another connection. But with Fast Reconnect, you won’t always get that option. So we’ve added a disconnect button. Two, in fact. One in the settings screen, and one on the Shake Menu.

REVAMPED KEYBOARD:

The HippoRemote keyboard has been overhauled under-the-hood. We’ve both simplified and improved the keyboard. Previously, there were two modes – live and buffered – and auto-correction and certain international keyboards would only work in one mode and not the other.

Now, we’ve eliminated modes. You just type. If you turn on auto-correction and international keyboard support, they just work. You can cut & paste. You can edit the beginning, middle or end of the text and HippoRemote automatically mirrors the changes to your computer.

TEXTEXPANDER SUPPORT:

An additional bonus of our improved keyboard is TextExpander support. If you haven’t heard of TextExpander, it’s a wonderful utility that lets you save and quickly retype snippets of text. It’s a must have for heavy typists on the Mac. TextExpander touch for iPhone brings your snippets to the phone, letting you quickly enter your text in a variety of apps. And now with TextExpander support built into HippoRemote, you can take your snippets with you to ANY computer. Including Windows and Linux PCs.

The promise of software keyboards is to be smarter and more efficient than their physical counterparts. With built-in keyboard history and now TextExpander support, the HippoRemote keyboard is the most productive and efficient keyboard available.

WRAPUP:

Thanks for making it all the way to the end! It’s a long post for a 0.1 update, but we packed a bunch of stuff into it. We hope you find them useful! And as always, we’d love to hear your feedback, so email us at hipporemote@robohippo.com with your comments, suggestions, and ideas!

Written by Albert

June 30th, 2010 at 6:15 pm

Posted in News

Clicker.TV Profile

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In case you missed it, Clicker announced a TV-optimized version of their web site — Clicker.tv — at last week’s Google I/O conference.

With interface and keyboard controls implemented using HTML5, I can browse Clicker’s database of online videos Flash-free. No incessant CPU and GPU fan noise. Actually watching videos, however, inevitably kicks the fans into high gear.

Grab the profile here.

Written by Albert

May 26th, 2010 at 3:29 am

Posted in App Profiles,News

GOM Player Profile

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Thanks go to Krunoslav Labazan for creating a profile for GOM Player.

Grab it from our profile repository.

Written by Albert

May 26th, 2010 at 2:34 am

Posted in App Profiles,News

Steam Powered Redux

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HippoRemote Pro 2.2 has been approved by Apple! This means that all the Game Controller goodness we talked about in our previous post is ready to go!

We’ve got four game profiles available, and a few more still in the works. The current profiles are Braid, Trine, The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom, and Portal. Three outstanding (and inexpensive) indie games, and one of the greatest games of all time.

Get Portal For Free!

With the release of Steam for Mac last week, Portal is FREE until May 24th! So click on the link below and grab it now!

http://store.steampowered.com/freeportal/

Then grab our Portal profile and start unlocking those achievements! And keep in touch by adding HippoRemote to your Steam friends. =)

Mac HippoVNC Update

On the topic of Mac gaming, our testing with Steam uncovered some mouse control issues. We’ve fixed them, but Mac users will need to update HippoVNC. If you’re not using HippoVNC, then games like Portal will not be playable. Screen Sharing simply doesn’t support the necessary functionality.

Creating Game Profiles

Of the four available profiles, two are keyboard only games and the other two require simultaneous keyboard and mouse control. Hopefully they will serve as good starting points for your own game profiles. We’ll also be adding more instructions and documentation but we’re currently away on a semi-vacation. We’ll get right on it when we’re back in town, but until then, please be patient. Thanks!

We are answering emails, though with a little bit of a delay. So if you need help getting your game profile up and running, drop us a line.

Limitations

There are some limitations to the game controller. First, it’s not compatible with every game. In particular, really old games and emulators are not supported.

Second, as mentioned above, HippoVNC is required. Standard VNC servers don’t support the necessary control methods to make gaming possible.

Third, on the Mac, certain games that change the screen resolution when going into full screen mode may not work correctly. It’s something we’re looking into.

Written by Albert

May 20th, 2010 at 10:34 am

Posted in News

Steam Powered

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So let me get right to it: We’re adding a game controller in our next HippoRemote Pro update! Soon, you’ll be able to play your favorite PC games from the comfort of your couch. No more keyboard and mouse to tether you to your desk.

There are a number of gamepad apps available in the App Store. Virtually all of them have a directional pad on the left, a button pad on the right, and some miscellaneous buttons in between. And our controller has them as well.

HOWEVER, our gamepad has an additional mode that combines a d-pad with a multi-touch trackpad. So you’ll be able to play all those games that rely on simultaneous keyboard and mouse access, including first person shooters like Portal and Team Fortress 2.

And because our gamepad leverages App Profiles, it’s customized for each game, giving you the exact controls you need.

Now, we’re just a small indie developer and we simply don’t have the resources to make profiles for all the PC games out there today, so we’re asking for your help. We’ll be posting instructions on how to create gamepad-enabled profiles on our website and answering any questions via email.

One final thing…

You may have noticed that we mentioned Portal and Team Fortress 2 earlier — games that are available as part of Steam for Mac. Steam for Mac is a big moment for Mac gaming and we desperately want to support it. In fact, our gamepad update was already under review with Apple. But with Steam for Mac releasing today, we’ve pulled our update to do additional Mac testing with the initial set of games. With any luck, the process will be smooth and painless and we’ll ready to resubmit shortly. Regardless, know that we’re working hard so that Mac and PC gamers can play!

Written by Albert

May 12th, 2010 at 1:50 pm

Posted in News