Last month we released the iOS App for Find A Grave, and the feedback has been fantastic. It’s motivating to hear how Find A Grave affects people’s lives, and our team has been happy with the response.
Today we’re releasing the first new features update for the app. We have a lot more we’re going to do, but these first features were the most requested and are ready to release, so we hope you like them!
- Profile Pages: Now you can view and edit your profile, you can also easily take a selfie for your profile photo, and decide whether to display your email address publicly or not. Your photo and profile are always displayed to everyone, and you can see other members profiles by clicking their names in the attribution for memorials and photos.
- Your Memorials and Photos: With this update you can see your memorials added and managed, all the photos you’ve taken, your outstanding photo requests and claims, and the photo requests you’ve fulfilled.
- Virtual Cemeteries: Save your favorite memorials to your virtual cemeteries from right inside the app! Keep your relatives close at hand, save interesting epitaphs, or collect famous grave sites visited.
Additionally, we’ve worked to make the app better in some small ways based directly on your feedback. We hope these updates make things easier for you.
- Cemetery Search: We’ve made two updates that should prevent the dreaded ‘cemetery not found’ responses you’ve been getting. First, the default location is now Any Location. This makes a huge difference when searching for cemeteries by name, since we search our whole database, not just the cemeteries near your current location. Second, if you enter a location, you’re going to have to select from our auto-complete drop down. This will ensure, especially globally, that the location you’re looking for is in our database.
- Rotate Photo: After taking a photo, you’ll be able to rotate it before uploading. This can be a problem especially on those overhead shots, and a few of you have brought this to our attention.
- GPS Locations: The GPS locations being gathered from your grave photos or when you use the GPS button are now displayed on memorials near the Plot information. Clicking on the GPS coordinates will take you to the map. We’re going to keep working on this, but it’s a start that I think you’ll appreciate.
- Memorial Managers: In the 1.0 release we omitted attribution to managers on the memorial page, instead just showing contributors. In hindsight, it’s obvious that we want to make sure you can reach the current manager, so now we’re displaying both if they’re different. If the manager is the same person as the contributor, we just list the contributor, but if the manager is different than the contributor, we’ll list them both. These are now linked to the profiles.
- Add New Memorial: It may not have been altogether obvious that you needed to add a memorial from within the memorial list of a cemetery. To make things easier to find, there’s a button on the cemetery details called “Add new memorial” which should be pretty self-explanatory.
We hope these updates make the Find A Grave app even more useful, and our dedicated programmers are working on the next update even as we speak. Coming soon, you’ll be able to do your secure account edits (change email address, change password), we’ll solve the pesky slow photo upload problem with a wifi-only delayed upload capability, and a couple of awesome secret features are in the works as well. We also know we need to get landscape mode working, especially for you iPad users, and we’re going to make it easier to suggest corrections.
Finally, we’ve heard you loud and clear about an Android version, but there’s nothing I can share about that today. Please keep your feature requests coming to email@example.com.
After you get your update, we would love to get your reviews in the iTunes store. Good reviews help everyone, they make us feel good of course, but more importantly they make Find A Grave more visible to new users who just don’t know what they’re missing out on. Please show your support for our free app!
Thanks again, and I look forward to sharing our next big thing.
About Michael Lawless
Michael is a Senior Product Manager for Ancestry.com