We released WhoAreYou, our visual caller id application for Android – right before the holidays    Frankly, we knew it wasn’t perfect.   But we wanted to get the app out, get quick feedback, and then rapidly improve it. And boy did we get feedback: hundreds of e-mails from users, along with very pointed reviews, like this one.

The gist was that we quickly discovered four major problems:

  • WhoAreYou’s caller id popup always overrode the user’s phone book, even when the app didn’t know who was calling.  Yikes.   (We’d assumed users would upload their contact lists – but to find out they could do that, they had to explicitly run WhoAreYou, which most never did.)
  • Users were split on how the caller id popup should behave.  Some want it on every call, others only for callers not in their phone book.  And some want it to disappear when calls are answered, while others want it to stick around.  (We’d decided on a simple default – sticky popup on every call – to see if that would work.
  • Some times the app was simply confusing.   For example, YouMail users of WhoAreYou who “connected to YouMail” went to a screen to enter their phone number and pin.  But they had to hit the “back arrow” to continue, which turned out to be non-obvious.
  • Finally, our caller id popup was ugly.   Not just “unattractive” but downright ugly.  While beauty is in the eye of the beholder, we’d have to agree.  (We’d focused more on making it work than how it looked.  Oops.)

The good news is that we’ve addressed these problems in the new version of WhoAreYou available for download.

  • The app now first looks up and displays from the user’s phone book, and then adds to it when WhoAreYou finds out more about the number (like the city/state or a compelling image). And there’s a “people” icon on the popup that goes directly to where user’s can upload contacts and connect to facebook.
  • The app has settings for when the popup occurs and how long it sticks around, with those options easily accessible from the popup.
  • We added a “continue” button when WhoAreYou users connect to YouMail – so it’s obvious what to do next.
  • And finally, we made the popup look better, like it’s floating above the incoming call.   Not a “10” yet, but at least a “7”.

So download this one and tell us what you think. We really are listening.