• [POLL] Shouldn't All Apps Support the Retina HD Display By Now?



    It seems like it has been quite a while since the launch of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, both of which have retina HD displays as defined by Apple. Retina HD means that the resolution of the display is much finer per square inch than that of basic retina displays, such as the one in the iPhone 5s.

    While most application developers have been fast to update their applications for the new resolution, many are incredibly still lagging behind, namely Ebay and PayPal, which I use pretty often for personal leisure. Now that's not to say that Ebay and PayPal are the only ones, but they seem like large companies that certainly have the resources to update their applications for modern devices and just choose not to.

    In fact, I've reached out to both companies over Twitter several times about the issue, and I always get the same reply that goes unanswered for several months:



    You might recall our post back in January on an Ebay application update for iOS where we specifically called out Ebay on their lack of support for the retina HD display despite issuing relatively regular application updates for the iOS platform; PayPal is guilty of these shenanigans too. And yeah... neither application has yet to be updated for the retina HD display to this day.

    When an application hasn't been updated for the retina HD display, it appears on the display to be magnified almost twice as large as it should be. In fact, it almost looks like a Nintendo 64 game because the graphics look so terrible that I want to rip my hair out. On devices with larger displays, it makes the keyboard really big and harder to type on, which also is a big problem in terms of UI/UX.

    I continue to find it so overbearingly disappointing that developers are already making Apple Watch applications and that large companies like Ebay and PayPal can't even get their ducks in a row to support the retina HD display of a device that has been out since last September that's almost 7 months now.

    Now don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to trash the name of Ebay or PayPal, as I use them fairly regularly for my hobbies. They're not the only ones that haven't updated their applications for the new display, but it should be addressed as soon as possible; Apple should have stricter requirements for developers of iOS applications to update their applications for newer devices as soon as possible after a new device release. Wouldn't you agree? Share in the comments below and vote in our forum poll at this link!

    Note: To vote in this poll, you must be viewing this post in a desktop Web browser. You won't see the poll in our mobile application.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: [POLL] Shouldn't All Apps Support the Retina HD Display By Now? started by Anthony Bouchard View original post
    Comments 23 Comments
    1. EVO's Avatar
      EVO -
      Some apps like ebay and Chase are just horrendous-looking without bigger screen support!
    1. Anthony Bouchard's Avatar
      Anthony Bouchard -
      Quote Originally Posted by EVO View Post
      Some apps like ebay and Chase are just horrendous-looking without bigger screen support!
      I agree!

      When I first got the iPhone 4, I remember feeling the same way waiting for slow developers to adopt retina HD display support. Apps look horrendous, even though they're still usable, when they aren't made to support the new hardware.
    1. Silverado1987's Avatar
      Silverado1987 -
      it took bank of america forever to update their app to the iPhone 6 resolution
    1. spiderguy84's Avatar
      spiderguy84 -
      I am a developer of iPhone apps. The rule has been since February that any new application or updates to existing apps have to support the 6 and 6 Plus sizes. So, the next time PayPal or eBay update, it WILL include support for those devices. Some developers have many apps, like me. For apple to force them to update an app for larger screens would require a tremendous load. Just changing design for my 53 apps in the AppStore would probably take non-stop work for a month or two. Instead, I can update them as needed. I understand the frustration, but for developers who have a ton of apps, forcing them to update would probably just make them not want to make iOS apps any more.
    1. Anthony Bouchard's Avatar
      Anthony Bouchard -
      Quote Originally Posted by spiderguy84 View Post
      I am a developer of iPhone apps. The rule has been since February that any new application or updates to existing apps have to support the 6 and 6 Plus sizes. So, the next time PayPal or eBay update, it WILL include support for those devices. Some developers have many apps, like me. For apple to force them to update an app for larger screens would require a tremendous load. Just changing design for my 53 apps in the AppStore would probably take non-stop work for a month or two. Instead, I can update them as needed. I understand the frustration, but for developers who have a ton of apps, forcing them to update would probably just make them not want to make iOS apps any more.
      What do you think is more important: the developer making an application that supports the latest devices for the good of the user and gaining lots of customers and users for their great support, or users just not using the applications anymore and the developer losing out on app sales/ad impressions because they don't want to do the work to stay up to date?

      I see your side of the story. As an application user though, I see this as killing the user experience and workflow. I think it is something that should be addressed.
    1. spiderguy84's Avatar
      spiderguy84 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Anthony Bouchard View Post
      What do you think is more important: the developer making an application that supports the latest devices for the good of the user and gaining lots of customers and users for their great support, or users just not using the applications anymore and the developer losing out on app sales/ad impressions because they don't want to do the work to stay up to date?

      I see your side of the story. As an application user though, I see this as killing the user experience and workflow. I think it is something that should be addressed.
      I just guess it's never been a make or break experience for me. I've never read through description and say it didn't include optimized for 6 and 6 Plus and think, "I'm not downloading this" or decide to delete after I installed and realized it didn't support. I'm just happy it fills the screen and doesn't have black bars like pre-5 apps did when on the iPhone 5.

      My situation is one where I develop apps for churches, and different smaller organizations. Most of the time, they are fine with it not supporting the biggest device, but I always promise it will when the next update comes out. I simply don't have the time to update every app, and still make my business profitable...I'd have to delay every other new app for a long time and miss out on opportunities.
    1. cristian24's Avatar
      cristian24 -
      I've been waiting very very patiently for eBay and PayPal to update their apps. But I lost it about a month ago. This is absolutely ridiculous.
    1. dmick89's Avatar
      dmick89 -
      I think apps should support whatever the developer feels is worth his or her time. I don't even like that Apple will insist the apps support it. Who cares? Let the user decide.

      I sure couldn't care less if 90% of the apps I have support the retina hd of my 6+. What advantages am I going to get from that with all of my news apps? Little to none.
    1. edwilk55's Avatar
      edwilk55 -
      Quote Originally Posted by EVO View Post
      Some apps like ebay and Chase are just horrendous-looking without bigger screen support!
      One of many issues I have w the Chase app. And they're not addressing any of them to date. [emoji107]
    1. cbrm's Avatar
      cbrm -
      So that's why the Paypal app looks so odd...
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      I gᗩᐯe ᑌᑭ oᑎ tᕼeᔕe ᗷig ᑕoᗰᑭᗩᑎieᔕ ᗩᑎᗪ ᑌᔕe "ᖴoᖇᑕegooᗪᖴit"
    1. Anthony Bouchard's Avatar
      Anthony Bouchard -
      Quote Originally Posted by vinaygoel2000 View Post
      I gᗩᐯe ᑌᑭ oᑎ tᕼeᔕe ᗷig ᑕoᗰᑭᗩᑎieᔕ ᗩᑎᗪ ᑌᔕe "ᖴoᖇᑕegooᗪᖴit"
      I don't think that tweak works very good with Ebay. It has some kind of custom layout or something.
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Anthony Bouchard View Post
      I don't think that tweak works very good with Ebay. It has some kind of custom layout or something.
      Works ok. Better than zoomed in view. So does PayPal.

      App won't let me post screenshots.
    1. nmoreman's Avatar
      nmoreman -
      I have complete empathy for the developer above trying to keep up when developing apps could be seen as a part
      time job or something that is done for fun and profit. I know nothing about developing, but I'm sure its time
      consuming.

      If I purchase an app, I would like it updated within a reasonable timeframe. If its a free app, I have the choice to
      delete or not use.

      But I do have a problem with Chase, Ebay, Paypal, etc., who have larger IT departments than most 3rd world
      countries and depend on so much of their revenue to come from mobile devices. I would think that this would
      be a priority to them!!!!!!!!!! They don't sell the apps, the sell the merchandise, and I cannot use my IPhone
      to do business with them.

      Just saying, they can afford it, have the expertise, and therefore should have it completed on Day 1!!

      Just my 2 cents.
    1. n00neimp0rtant's Avatar
      n00neimp0rtant -
      I work for a company that builds commerce iOS apps for retailers. Updating an app to support the Retina HD display is an enormous amount of work, often rivaling the amount of work it would take to rewrite the app completely from scratch. Full Retina HD support means 2 things: 1) the entire app's interface employs autolayout, and 2) all image assets come in @3x size.

      Autolayout: instead of placing UI elements at arbitrary coordinates on the screen (this was fine before Retina HD displays, since all the phones were the same width), developers now have to specify constraints for every element. "This button should always be centered in its superview," "this text label should always be 10 px from the left edge of the screen and no more than 2 lines high," "these images should all have the same X coordinate," and so on. This is already extremely time-consuming even if the interface is mostly done in Interface Builder, but it's nearly impossible otherwise, as is the case with many of our older apps that were built on a framework that exclusively builds the UI from code.

      Image assets: if your graphic designers designed the UI at 2x in a non-vector design tool (e.g. Photoshop), then they have to redo all of the assets almost from scratch. No way around it.

      On top of all of that, some clients don't even realize there's anything amiss. When the app "looks fine" to them, it's hard to convince them otherwise, especially upon breaking the news of how much work would have to go into fixing something that they didn't even notice was a problem.
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      Quote Originally Posted by n00neimp0rtant View Post
      I work for a company that builds commerce iOS apps for retailers. Updating an app to support the Retina HD display is an enormous amount of work, often rivaling the amount of work it would take to rewrite the app completely from scratch. Full Retina HD support means 2 things: 1) the entire app's interface employs autolayout, and 2) all image assets come in @3x size.

      Autolayout: instead of placing UI elements at arbitrary coordinates on the screen (this was fine before Retina HD displays, since all the phones were the same width), developers now have to specify constraints for every element. "This button should always be centered in its superview," "this text label should always be 10 px from the left edge of the screen and no more than 2 lines high," "these images should all have the same X coordinate," and so on. This is already extremely time-consuming even if the interface is mostly done in Interface Builder, but it's nearly impossible otherwise, as is the case with many of our older apps that were built on a framework that exclusively builds the UI from code.

      Image assets: if your graphic designers designed the UI at 2x in a non-vector design tool (e.g. Photoshop), then they have to redo all of the assets almost from scratch. No way around it.

      On top of all of that, some clients don't even realize there's anything amiss. When the app "looks fine" to them, it's hard to convince them otherwise, especially upon breaking the news of how much work would have to go into fixing something that they didn't even notice was a problem.
      I am not a developer but I can't seem to agree with you when a Cydia tweak ForceGoodFit fixes this problem (in most cases) instantly for apps like American Express, Cars.com, Dominos, eBay, Gas Guru, Geico, Home Depot, JCPenney, Kmart, Lowes, PayPal, Pizza Hut, Sears, Speedtest, UPS, Walmart, Weather Underground, etc.
    1. DoctorPaco's Avatar
      DoctorPaco -
      Another bad offender is the Playstation app. I can't believe that these big companies, most of them in the tech industry, haven't upgraded their apps. Even worse: they are still updating the apps like normal. It's as if they're pretending that the iPhone 6 and 6+ don't exist.
    1. hopethemodworx's Avatar
      hopethemodworx -
      I figured a majority of them did support high res
    1. trevorrawson's Avatar
      trevorrawson -
      This is a huge issue for me. It's caused me to jump ship on a few app's and their third party hardware. Misfit being one of them as well as iLumi. My biggest problem is this. These are two companies who sole focus is technology. If they can't get it together to update an app to fit the screen of new phones then what else are they going to be slacking on. Set one employee aside with the app and photoshop, give him a few weeks and boom, done. Some of the lower end developers are months ahead of large companies with teams of developers. While to some it might not be make or break, to others it is and they are losing out. It shouldn't take longer than the first of the year to get this taken care of.
    1. hopethemodworx's Avatar
      hopethemodworx -
      I've noticed the same. The larger companies don't seem to care much.
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