A change to the OData back end fixed an issues with Actors for Netflix. Previously only the first 20 movies were shown for each actor, the default for that query is now 500, which is enough that all movies are now shown for all actors. No change was needed to the application.
Next steps for this app are to add advanced search and save lists of favorite actors and movies. The advanced search feature will be shared with Instant Queue Add for Netflix as well.
Apple approved V7 a few days ago, with iOS4 support, and more than 10,000 updates have happened in the first few days. Some glitches in the Netflix API on Monday prevented apps from authorizing, and this broke IQ+, and caused some one-star bad reviews.
The iPad compatible update for IQ+ is going to be a major re-write. There are a few simple changes to Actors for Netflix that will probably get done first.
It took a lot longer than expected due to other distractions, and as a first release, it doesn't have all the features that we would like, but it is fun to use, and I learned several new techniques that will now be applied to the next version of Instant Queue Add for Netflix.
Winner of the best use of web API prize. Based on Netflix OData API. Concept and player interface code by Adrian Cockcroft, OData queries wrangled by Kirsten Jones, user interface design and almost all the code by Andrew Pouliot, with thanks to AQGridView by Alan Quatermain
The OData API is a free and open interface to the Netflix catalog, you do not have to be a Netflix customer to use this app, it needs a Netflix login to play an instant movie, but you can browse all Netflix movies and actors, and OData supports slice and dice queries into the catalog.
I have an iPad to test on and the existing V6 of Instant Queue Add for Netflix works fine in iPhone compatible mode. Also sales are up over the weekend as more people are thinking about Netflix on the iPad and iPhone...
I am going to make a small change that allows better integration with the Netflix app on iPad and do a simple conversion to a universal app, so all existing users will get an iPad version.
The integration is to provide an easy way to get to the Netflix website page for a movie, then you can hit the play button and it will Invoke the official Netflix app and play the movie or episode.
This message typed on the iPad, the iPhone seems so small now.....
It's hovering around 75th spot in the Paid Apps in Entertainment list, and has moved ahead of two other apps to become the leading paid Netflix app! More than 10,000 users have upgraded to V6 since Monday, and the average rating for V6 is three stars, up from 2.5 stars for V5. Many thanks to all the users, and enjoy the Oscars tonight... [Update: During the Oscars broadcast IQ+ made it as high as 64th place.]
I'm making progress on the next version. It can now create named archives of the instant queue, and write the archives back to Netflix. Basic sorting of the queue at Netflix also works, and I'm developing an advanced sorting wizard for combination sorts. I may also add multiple account support to make it easier to move queues between accounts. The basic idea is that you may have one account activated on a TV set, but have several accounts that would like to take it over by copying their queue's over (and restoring the original afterwards).
It's going to take a few weeks before the new features are ready to release. In the meantime please remember to rate Version 6, and suggest new features in the comments here or in iTunes reviews.
I submitted V6 to the app store and set a start date a few days into the future. A side effect of this is that V5 was suspended from the app store for Sunday through Monday morning. The way App's are updated makes it look as if some things are private to the version of the app being modified, but they affect the old version as well. Apologies to anyone who was looking for Instant Queue Add for Netflix yesterday.
Thanks to review feedback from customers, two features will be added. One is that the application can be rotated so that the lists are shown horizontally, and more text can be seen for each movie. This is useful for movies with long titles. The other is the re-instatement of the RSS feed of new instant choices as an additional list. There is less data per movie, so the RSS list display shows the synopsis in the sub-area under the title, and the only sort option is a title sort or the original sort, which is grouped by genre. Adding a movie from the RSS feed takes a little longer since the extra information is loaded at that point.
Some minor additional bug fixes and enhancements are that the number of movies in the Instant Queue is shown immediately on startup, and any lists that fail to load due to poor network connections will be retried without having to quit the app. The free trial button is changed to link via the new Netflix deal with the Google Affiliate Network program, as is the link in the blog border.
At present, I'm still working to debug sorting the queue and having it change at Netflix, and this feature may not make it into V6. Some of the views currently ignore rotation, so you have to rotate at the starting screen or go back to it to change from portrait to landscape mode. I may just leave rotation working this way...
I expect to submit V6 to Apple in the next week or so.
Instant Queue Add for Netflix was developed as a spare-time activity, and is not endorsed by Netflix Inc. However I do work for Netflix and helped debug the Netflix API using this code. I am sharing the basic code required to talk to Netflix from an iPhone on my Millicomputing blog.