Author Topic: Slim Padding and general space problems in ver 1.8 and 1.9 compared to 1.7  (Read 3403 times)

Julian

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Dear All,

Version 1.7.2-132 compared to version 1.9.0-224-dev.

First, thank you for the improvements made so far.

Second, may I just repeat myself briefly by saying that one of the great things about AquaMail is the regular updates. Personally, I believe regular change can be a positive thing for apps, however, the best apps that I use are the apps best at presenting the maximum amount of well organised information in the smallest space, the main limitation of a mobile's screen. The most recent update significantly reduces the information available on my mobile's screen within AquaMail (please see the attached screenshots, with the same 'Message list' settings).

Third, analysing the problem, there are a number of points to consider:
1. It is clear that the space between the messages is much greater in ver 1.9.  I know that changes have been made over the original 1.8 release, but it is clear that slim padding is still less aggressive than before and I don't understand why the settings can't just be rolled over - why take away my ability to set padding to the same amount as in version 1.7?
2. In the examples below, both 'message list' settings have set the font size to 'normal'. Is 'normal', now not normal? Has the value for 'normal' changed for some reason? Even if I change the 'normal' to 'small' in the 1.9 version it doesn't do much to help recreate the 1.7 'message list', there is still too much unnecessary padding.
3. Perhaps one of the problems is the replacement of the tick with a box and the new way the checkbox is anchored vertically. It appears, that whereas the old tick always took up the same vertical space as the first two lines of a message, the new box is centred vertically taking up just half of the top line's space, all the middle line's space and half the third line's space. I can see that this could be considered better - but equally it can clearly be considered worse. It looks much worse in the example attached. And, on the subject of the check box, why is the box much fatter in terms of vertical space than the tick? It takes up so much more space in each direction than necessary and doesn't seem to look better as a result, so why do this?
4. By moving the paperclip to above the star, another line has been added between messages with attachments - the paperclip was happy where it was. Why move it to somewhere where it harms the amount of information that can fit on the screen, what's the point, as it looked good previously.
5. Similarly the message received time is in a vertical line with the paperclip and star - why have you changed this? The more information that can be presented inline like in ver 1.7, then the greater number of messages can be seen - why mess with this. It seems to me that the message received time is now much less easy to see at a glance, that is not progress.
6 I have also noticed, and it is clear in the attachments, that the new version shows an empty line of space where there is no message text to preview - this is inefficient and again an unnecessary change. If a line is empty, then why present it - what's the point of a completely empty line, when space is at a premium?

It is hard to look at the new screen in ver 1.9 compared to ver 1.7, in this case, and not notice how much worse it is, not just from a look and feel point of view, but most importantly with regards to information. There is less information presented and space where there need not be. Does anybody reading this prefer the look of the new screen in my attached screenshots? If not, I can't see the justification for these changes. Why have changes if they don't either increase the information available or make the presentation better? The screen in ver 1.7 is really very good, looks good, well balanced, clear and lots of information and nearly no wasted space.

I have seen other discussion of 'slim padding' on the forum and see that generally others are having similar complaints. I wonder whether a possible solution might be to have 2 choices? Perhaps 'Original' (as in ver 1.7), 'New' (as in ver1.8) and 'None' (as in every version without padding)?

In any case, please may I plead with you to help me get back the 'message list' that I have grown so fond of? Just give me access to the settings I had before please.

Thank you again for your time on this and thank you to the whole forum for your thoughts.

Regards,

Julian

Kostya Vasilyev

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Our designer is now here on the forum, so it would be best to ping him directly, here for example:

https://www.aqua-mail.com/forum/index.php?topic=5461.0

( but I'll also send him an email and with a link to this thread )
Creating debug logs for diagnostics: https://www.aqua-mail.com/troubleshooting/

The official FAQ: https://www.aqua-mail.com/faq/

Лог-файлы для диагностики: https://www.aqua-mail.com/ru/troubleshooting/

Вопросы и ответы: https://www.aqua-mail.com/ru/faq/

Kostya Vasilyev

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Please turn off app settings -> message list -> indent previews and you will immediately see a difference:

- the checkbox or the contact image will be vertically aligned on the first two lines (sender / subject) not three (sender / subject / first line of preview)

- the empty line of "message text preview", when there is no actual preview, will go away

Font sizes have been adjusted somewhat, yes. We still provide a way to adjust them individually (app settings -> message list -> second half of the list -> you can adjust the size of "line 1" or "line 2" making them larger / smaller as you wish, independently of the message list's overall size adjustment).

I leave the rest for the designer to respond to.
Creating debug logs for diagnostics: https://www.aqua-mail.com/troubleshooting/

The official FAQ: https://www.aqua-mail.com/faq/

Лог-файлы для диагностики: https://www.aqua-mail.com/ru/troubleshooting/

Вопросы и ответы: https://www.aqua-mail.com/ru/faq/

Julian

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Dear Paris Geek,

Thank you for your comments.

It appears to me that what you are saying is that you want to leave the current level of padding, that you like to use, unchanged, because that allows you to retain a similar look and feel to that which you previously enjoyed before the update.

If you are saying that, then you must actually agree with my request, as I am asking for the same?

Except, while you have found an equivalent setting in the new version to your previous set up, that is not an option for me currently.

I have said already and would concur that the app should be configurable to users to allow them to retain previous settings. If you release an 'update' that actually does away with previous settings, it's not really an update, rather a replacement.

I can, of course, in the short term, not upgrade, but that is only a short term solution and the one I am using on my primary device (with the latest update on my spare).

At the end of your communications you are good enough to repeat the idea of multiple padding options being given as a possible solution; I did not know that the previous non slim padding view had been changed along with the slim padding view. Certainly, if I was a developer on this, I think I would first have tried to retain settings and then, in the update, offered further options, rather than just choosing new settings on behalf of my users, who must all either have slim padding turned on or off. Why unilaterally make the change, especially without retaining the old options?

So it seems that we are in agreement in requesting slim padding settings that include the previous ones. I hope agreement in the user base is more likely to bring change (or should I say retention).

Point 5 we agree on - good. I have a reasonable work around, although, I still don't see the advantage of the new arrangement.

Point 6 too we agree on. I also have a reasonable workaround for this, but it is comparatively inelegant.

What about Point 4? Why move the paperclip to where it takes more space, what is the balancing benefit of this?

I have to say, I also preferred the tick to the box, but if the box really is progress I can live with it - looks like it is causing problems and I am not sure what the change is solving to compensate?

Thank you again for your comments, it is reassuring to know that others have a similar outlook on this issue.

Regards,

Julian





Julian

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Paris Geek,

Thank you for your interest in which device I use; it is an Xperia Z2, with a 5.2" screen.

Best phone I have had, with good battery life a very useful cradle for the bedside table and has proved rugged enough without a case, just a screen protector. None of the newer ones have offered the same combination for me, but, unfortunately, it won't be updated with Nougat. So as soon as I see something similar with proper USB C, I think I will move on. Maybe S8?

I have disabled the Gmail app, I use AquaMail.

Regards,

Julian

Hi,

Thanks for the great feedback, I'm glad you took the time! It sure sparks some discussion and we'll see how to address your concerns and needs in one of our next releases.

I won't bore you with details of the whole process, but what I can say is the following. With this initial visual refresh we wanted to achieve a couple things (apart from the brand colors change) - make the app look a bit more up-to-date with current standards and trends; and since we thought that the UI elements in some parts of the app look a bit too crammed together, we wanted to give them a bit more of a breathing room.

What makes Aqua Mail so amazing is how customizable it is - unfortunately for me, a side effect for this is, its difficult to take into account all the ways that people use and customize the app. So while the new design looked great in my mockups, and I like the way it looks in my own setup, my test (and personal) devices, etc, I can see why the latest design changes aren't that great for your use case and your personal preferences.

We'll certainly adjust the design as soon as we can, maybe revert a couple of changes (I like your paperclip thoughts!), etc.
Thanks again.

I'll certainly discuss my proposals on this matter with the community.

Julian

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Dear Ibetkov,

Thank you for your reply about the great feedback - I appreciate that.

It is great to be able to have these discussions with the person that does all the hard work on the app now.

I have considered your words for a while and if I may, I would just like to say two things which are offered in the hope of being constructive.

First, and I don't think the details would bore me, as I used to develop software and interfaces too, the idea of giving things a bit more breathing room seems like a good idea when standing back and taking an overhead, in general, view. But is it a unilateral decision of a new direction or may I politely ask if it was at the request of the users or because, for the developer, it seems better that the app be "modernised" in this way? Looking through the forum, I think its possible that this update contained changes looking for a justification, rather than the other way round. Of course, if nothing ever changed, we would never find better methods and improvements, but was there a groundswell of current users looking for a padding out of crammed data or evidence of potential users put off because of crammed parts - I can't see the evidence for that on this forum.

Second, you have hit the nail on the head when you say that customisation is one of the reasons AquaMail is so amazing. So if you start with one level of customisation, the amount of customisation that was available in ver 1.7, and then you release a new version, where some of the customisation has gone, you seem to be implying yourself that the new version is less amazing. In other words, if AuqaMail is amazing because it is customisable to accommodate so many different personal preferences, and then the new release doesn't accommodate the personal preferences it did before, and so can be considered less customisable, you therefore have a less amazing product than you did.

Anyway, it looks to me like the consensus is to try to recover what was lost in the new version through more slim padding options in the settings - is that right? And it's good to know the movement of the paperclip has had its day (just don't make it dance or talk).

Thanks very much for your time on this and discussing it with us.

Regards,

Julian