Today we are proud to release Tabris 1.1. Since the 1.0 release we have focused on making Tabris even more robust and made improvements such as a whole new TabFolder implementation for the Android client and a new Tree implementation for the iOS client. Of course, besides robustness and bug fixes we have added many new features. In this post I’d like to show you the new features in the 1.1 release.
Adoption of RAP 2.1
While Tabris 1.0 was based on RAP 2.0, Tabris 1.1 adopts the latest RAP release. As a result your Tabris application will benefit from the features and bug fixes that have made it into RAP 2.1. If you are still based on RAP 1.* and want to get started with Tabris please read the RAP migration guide.
With Tabris 1.0 we introduced the AppLauncher which is great for calling other apps such as the browser, mail, maps or others. And, there are cases where you need the called app to call you back when it has completed its task, so 2-way app communication is necessary. The x-callback-url specification is a standard that describes how 2-way app communication can be achieved on Android and iOS. With Tabris 1.1 we have added support for x-callback-url. The great thing here is that you don’t need to take care of registering the URLs for your app. This is all done by the framework. All you need to do is call the other app and add a listener which gets called back.
Automatic session refresh
As you might know, RAP has the concept of a UISession. This session can timeout when a user is idle for a specific time. With Tabris 1.0 you had to refresh a timed-out session by pressing a button in a timeout dialog. With Tabris 1.1 this is not needed anymore. When a session has timed-out it will automatically refresh – a much better UX for your users.
Some applications are very sensitive regarding privacy of the user’s data. Thus it’s sometimes necessary to be notified to lock the screen or perform a logout when the user has not used the app for a specific period of time. With Tabris 1.1 we added an inactivity timer that can be used for this purpose. This feature uses the AppEvents which were introduced with Tabris 0.10.0.
For security reasons it might be necessary to ensure that displayed information will be hidden if the server is out of reach. Together with the inactivity timer, you can for example, save user data or destroy the UI when the user is inactive. But, sometimes this is not enough because a round trip to the server also takes time. For some apps an immediate “black screen” is needed when the user is inactive. To achieve this we have added a screen protection feature to Tabris 1.1. When this is enabled the screen “blackens” when the server is not reachable or too slow to react on time.
That’s it! If you would like to try out Tabris you can download the 30-day trial version from the Tabris download site. And, what can you expect in the future? Currently we are working together with the RAP team to be able to support the styling of lists and we are making good progress. Other features we are working on are Tablet Support for the TabrisUI, a Search action for the TabrisUI and some other cool stuff. If you have any questions, leave a comment or post to our forum on stackoverflow.