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Product Update

Fall 2022 Product Updates

Written by Nate Irwin

November 30, 2022


Happy fall everyone! I’m excited to fill you in on all the improvements we made to the OuterSpatial product over the summer, so let’s jump right in!

Challenges

Three screenshots depicting new challenge-related functionality in the OuterSpatial app.

Many of our organization partners saw heavy participation for the 2022 challenges they ran in OuterSpatial. Based on feedback from many visitors, and to prepare for even more challenges in 2023, we continue to work hard to improve this feature. In addition to addressing bugs to improve the stability and usability of challenges, we also made a number of improvements:

  • Redesigned challenge task cards: Now display more information about the check-in location for a challenge task — including its distance from your current location and the name of the check-in location’s parent area, if available.
  • Tappable completed challenge task cards: This makes it easy to get back to the detail screen (including the map!) for the attached area, trail, point of interest, or outing after completing a check-in challenge task.
  • Ability to “override” location validation for challenge check-ins: This ensures you can check-in even if your device’s GPS fix is inaccurate because of heavy tree canopy, rugged terrain, or something else. Note that challenge task check-ins that override the location validation are flagged and are subject to review by the host organization.

Three screenshots depicting new gamification functionality for challenges in the OuterSpatial app.

We’re also putting the finishing touches on some gamification features that will be available for all challenges in the next few months:

  • Badges: You will soon be able to earn badges for completing individual challenge tasks and challenges themselves.
  • Social: The challenge screen will soon include a social tab that provides a running list of all the challenge task completions from all of the challenge’s participants.
  • Leaderboard: You’ll soon be able to view a leaderboard that shows how you’re doing, re: challenge task completion, compared to other challenge participants.

Reserve Now

Two screenshots depicting the new 'Reserve Now' functionality in the OuterSpatial app.

For locations that are reservable in one of our partner systems, you’ll now see a “Reserve Now” button. Tapping on it will take you directly to the corresponding web page where you can reserve the campground, picnic pavilion, etc.

This feature is only available in a few communities right now, but we plan on rolling it out for others in the coming months.

Improved Beta Program

Two screenshots depicting how to participate in OuterSpatial's improved beta program.

Interested in helping us improve the OuterSpatial product? Our revamped beta testing program now makes it easy to sign up for our iOS and Android beta testing programs directly in the OuterSpatial app. Once signed up, you’ll receive an email that walks you through the process of getting setup to test beta versions of the OuterSpatial app. We also plan on using the beta program to capture user research and execute usability testing.

Take a look at this knowledge base article for information on how to join the beta program.

Other Improvements

As usual, over the course of the summer we also made a number of smaller enhancements and bug fixes across the OuterSpatial product.

Mobile

  • Over the last couple of months, we doubled-down on OuterSpatial Android, making substantial improvements to the stability and performance of the app. We plan on continuing to invest heavily in Android, and we will — of course — keep you updated on our progress!
  • Article, event, challenge, and location cards throughout the app have been redesigned to show critical information in a more consistent and clear way.
  • Outings now support multiple parent areas. If an outing crosses through more than one parent area, you’ll now see this important context throughout the app in cards, search results, and screens.
  • We added a new “Notification Settings” section to the app settings. You can use this section to subscribe/unsubscribe from OuterSpatial’s notification channels — including Tips & Tricks, Product Updates, Social Engagement, and Favorite Updates. Additionally, you can toggle on/off the two supported notification mechanisms, Push and Email, for each of these channels.
  • Results for the Explore search now includes articles, events, and challenges.
  • We renamed “Bookmarks” to “Favorites”, added the ability to “Favorite” an organization, and redesigned your personalized “Favorites” screen under the Me tab.
  • Posts that are attached to child trails, points of interest, and outings now surface in the parent area screen’s “Social” tab.
  • You can now delete your OuterSpatial account without leaving the app.

Conclusion

That was a lot, so thanks for sticking with me! We’re already hard at work on a number of big new features for next Spring/Summer. To give you a bit of a sneak peek, we’re prioritizing improvements to app onboarding, notifications, alerts, the community home screen, and social tools. Stay tuned!


About the Author

A photo of Nate Irwin.

Nate Irwin

Chief Product Officer

nate@outerspatial.com