1. FirstClassEd's Avatar
    Hi.

    I am wondering just what is the turnaround time these days for approval for apps for the iPhone (and iPod Touch). My business (OK, my life) is centered around a product I sell and support called FirstClass which is used for Collaboration by Business and Education clients around the globe.

    The developers (Open Text) have developed a nice piece of client software for FirstClass for the iPhone/iPodTouch and it was submitted and approved back at the end of March 2009 -- yet it has *still* not appeared on the iTunes App Store. That is now approaching 60 days!

    It is not an issue of encryption -- the application uses an encrypted data stream -- but the developers jumped through the hoop of getting the required Export Certificate back in April. It is not an issue of OS 3.0 compatibility -- the developers have it running fine on the latest Beta 3.0 release. It is not a matter of conflict with Apple's built-in functionality -- it uses the built-in ActiveSync to synchronize your Calendar and Contacts with the FirstClass Calendar, and the display of other Group Calendars and Group Contact Databases has been suppressed so as not to conflict with the built-in Calendaring and Collaboration.

    There is a huge user base out there (there are millions of FirstClass "seats" in use around the world), and Apple has only issued two updates stating something to the effect of "approval is taking longer than expected at this time, please be patient".

    What kind of approval times are other developers seeing?

    Curious minds want to know!
    Last edited by FirstClassEd; 05-28-2009 at 07:20 PM.
    05-28-2009 03:40 PM
  2. carver_rds's Avatar
    I am one of the users of FirstClass and a large school district.
    our administrators are asking daily about when they can use this app.
    I think Apple is missing the boat, as we would have many more iPhones in district if the app was available.
    05-28-2009 04:49 PM
  3. bujin's Avatar
    We use FirstClass in our school district as well. We can sync our email and calendars already...what functionality would this app provide that iPhones can't already? (I don't know exactly how we've arranged sync capability, but I know it works.)
    05-28-2009 06:34 PM
  4. FirstClassEd's Avatar
    We use FirstClass in our school district as well. We can sync our email and calendars already...what functionality would this app provide that iPhones can't already? (I don't know exactly how we've arranged sync capability, but I know it works.)
    You can actually log into FirstClass with a client interface (not a browser interface), open and interact with your conferences and everything.

    It works great.

    If I knew how to post an image here, I could post a screenshot of myself logged in. You get the "red dot" for new items, and when you open an item, you see the red postal cancellation mark and all that. History on messages, etc., etc., etc.

    And it's free.
    05-28-2009 07:19 PM
  5. bujin's Avatar
    You can actually log into FirstClass with a client interface (not a browser interface), open and interact with your conferences and everything.

    It works great.

    If I knew how to post an image here, I could post a screenshot of myself logged in. You get the "red dot" for new items, and when you open an item, you see the red postal cancellation mark and all that. History on messages, etc., etc., etc.

    And it's free.
    That's awesome. However, we don't need a browser interface - we sync to our built-in calendar and email programs. That being said, having access to conferences, etc would be great!
    05-28-2009 08:37 PM
  6. Notebook's Avatar
    The FirstClass Mobile Client is not a "browser interface", but rather a full FirstClass client. It provides almost all of the features and benefits of using the computer-based client, but on your iPhone. Once FirstClass Server 10 is released and deployed in your location, the FirstClass Mobile Client will also be able to run your RAD apps, which for us is huge as our entire student records system (including our gradebook, discipline tracking, and our special education IPPs) are RAD apps.

    I am at a loss as to why Apple continues to drag their feet in approving this app? Our school district recently switched to Rogers, and one of the biggest reasons was specifically because of the ability to use the FirstClass Mobile Client on an iPhone. The Rogers team that supports us have indicated they have tried to ask Apple as well, but have received no comment in return... Very disappointing (but, to be honest, not totally uncharacteristic for Apple).
    05-28-2009 11:17 PM
  7. Calvin#IM's Avatar
    This is exactly the situation we are in as well. We just switched providers based on a number of things, but one for sure is the ability to work directly through the FC client.

    We wish to run RAD apps as well so allow access to our SIS package. FirstClass is huge within Education across North America.
    05-29-2009 06:19 PM
  8. gfalcon's Avatar
    One of the very cool things about the iPhone client for FirstClass is that it does support RAD applications (with a bit of work) as well as custom forms. We are fielding questions from our customers every day on when Apple will release the application.

    Having been fortunate enough to have had access to the beta, I can tell you this is a game-changer for mobile access to FirstClass. I've had various "smartphones" for the last 4 or 5 years, and this is the only one I've been inclined to use daily.

    -Gary
    06-01-2009 01:33 PM
  9. dkmiller3356's Avatar
    We use FirstClass in our school district as well. We can sync our email and calendars already...what functionality would this app provide that iPhones can't already? (I don't know exactly how we've arranged sync capability, but I know it works.)
    Can you get me some info on how you sync to First Class with your iPhone? Are you a Mac district? My tech folks can't figure it out.
    06-03-2009 06:40 PM
  10. Notebook's Avatar
    Can you get me some info on how you sync to First Class with your iPhone? Are you a Mac district? My tech folks can't figure it out.
    FirstClass is not "Mac" or "Windows", or "Linux" for that matter... It is FirstClass, it does not matter what platform you are running. To synchronize your iPhones with your FirstClass Contacts and Calendar you need to be running the sync services (free for up to 50 users) and then you can visit the FirstClass web site (/iphone) to see the step-by-step, illustrated instructions on how to configure the settings on the iPhone.

    In order to check mail you need the FirstClass Mobile Client, which, as is the point of this thread, Apple has continually refused to post to the App Store. I believe today is day 64 since OpenText submitted the app to Apple.
    06-05-2009 01:23 PM
  11. dkmiller3356's Avatar
    FirstClass is not "Mac" or "Windows", or "Linux" for that matter... It is FirstClass, it does not matter what platform you are running. To synchronize your iPhones with your FirstClass Contacts and Calendar you need to be running the sync services (free for up to 50 users) and then you can visit the FirstClass web site (/iphone) to see the step-by-step, illustrated instructions on how to configure the settings on the iPhone.

    In order to check mail you need the FirstClass Mobile Client, which, as is the point of this thread, Apple has continually refused to post to the App Store. I believe today is day 64 since OpenText submitted the app to Apple.
    I was told that people using a Mac enviornment have an easier time getting this to work. I will try it but we are expecting firewall issues. Thanks for your help.
    06-05-2009 02:59 PM
  12. Notebook's Avatar
    I was told that people using a Mac enviornment have an easier time getting this to work. I will try it but we are expecting firewall issues. Thanks for your help.
    ActiveSync uses port 80, and more than likely you have port 80 open to allow access to your web server, so you should be good in that regard.

    We are a mixed environment on the workstation side, but on the server side our FirstClass server (9.1) is running on a Windows 2003 server. This summer we are making a double-change in that we are moving all of our centralized servers to virtualized environments, and at the same time moving to 64-bit Windows Server 2008. In any event, enabling and configuing the sync services would be as easy on the Windows side as the Mac.

    The big question continues to be, when is Apple going to approve and post the FirstClass Mobile Client for iPhone? As was the main essence of the first post to this thread, it seems to me to be a no-brainer for Apple to post this app. Not only would hundreds of thousands of potential users want it, for Apple it would be a way to sell more iPhones because so many FirstClass users would want to take advantage of its use.
    06-05-2009 05:21 PM
  13. bujin's Avatar
    Can you get me some info on how you sync to First Class with your iPhone? Are you a Mac district? My tech folks can't figure it out.
    Hi,

    I'm still waiting for my tech guy to give me details - hopefully the above explanation will help.
    06-05-2009 06:10 PM
  14. jshansen's Avatar
    Here in Scandinavia (Sweden, Norway, Finland & Denmark) we are more than a lillion using FirstClass. We are waiting with little patience on the iPhone Client.
    Apples procedures on getting apps to the appstore looks like a (bad) joke!

    How can it take 2+ months to look at an app and publish it???

    (imagine if Windows and OS X should have apps "filtered" by a party that dont communicate following unknown rules...!!!)
    06-16-2009 05:11 AM
  15. dwetherow's Avatar
    I am hoping that someone has a copy of FirstClass Mobile to share, especially if it is intended to be free. Is this possible or does the Apps store have to distribute for it to work? FirstClass is the one thing holding me back from going iphone.
    06-23-2009 05:15 PM
  16. dkmiller3356's Avatar
    If you some research you will see that it is still in the approval process. That being said, ALL apps must be approved by Apple and can only be downloaded throuh the App store. That is iPhone 101. I bought my iPhone and been holding out for the same reason as you. The client will not sync your calendar or contacts even when it arrives. That must be done using sync services. Mine still does not work. VERY frustrating.
    06-23-2009 05:55 PM
  17. dwetherow's Avatar
    So you are saying that the FirstClass Mobile client will not sync with iPhone or iTouch calendar/contacts? If that is the case it sounds like FC Mobile only works when your are online via cell service or wifi. Or are you saying that FC Mobile will fix the sync problems you are having and you are waiting?
    06-24-2009 12:21 PM
  18. dkmiller3356's Avatar
    FirstClass Mobile is not a sync. It is a client that allows you access to data that resides on the server. A sync is when data resides in two (or more) locations and is syncronized to match in both locations. In this case the client will allow you access to mail, conferences and other parts of your First Class data. As I understand it, the client will not allow you access to the calendar or contacts. Calendar and Contacts will be handled (and according to First Class can be done now by the way) by a sync using ActiveSync services currently provided in the latest version of FirstClass.

    Right now my own situation is that I bough the iPhone but do not have access to Contacts or Calendars from FirstClass. My IT guys have been unable to get the phone to Sync. I am not sure why yet but they think it is the firewall. I love the iPhone but will remain frustrated until this get fixed.
    06-24-2009 04:25 PM
  19. iGLGred's Avatar
    Yeah, I could really use the client as a student. I may need to contact my teachers over the summer, talk to a tutor, or even just talk to friends who don't use Facebook or Twitter. I only have an iPod Touch, so it isn't going to give me access anywhere I want to go, but it would really help. I love Apple, and I will always use Macs, but this is ridiculous. I just got an email yesterday from the head of technology in the school district, and she told me the application was still under review, not even pending approval. The delay could be due to the fact that the App opens files, Apple is usually against an App booting executables. BTW, if anyone wants to know more about the features of the App, go to www(dot)firstclass(dot)com/iPhone

    ~iGLGred
    06-25-2009 11:29 AM
  20. dwetherow's Avatar
    FirstClass Mobile is not a sync. It is a client that allows you access to data that resides on the server. A sync is when data resides in two (or more) locations and is syncronized to match in both locations. In this case the client will allow you access to mail, conferences and other parts of your First Class data. As I understand it, the client will not allow you access to the calendar or contacts. Calendar and Contacts will be handled (and according to First Class can be done now by the way) by a sync using ActiveSync services currently provided in the latest version of FirstClass.

    Right now my own situation is that I bough the iPhone but do not have access to Contacts or Calendars from FirstClass. My IT guys have been unable to get the phone to Sync. I am not sure why yet but they think it is the firewall. I love the iPhone but will remain frustrated until this get fixed.

    Gottcha...thanks! So a full service setup will include both FC Mobile which is a mini-desktop FC Client and Active Sync which will function like the old Palm Sync
    06-25-2009 12:24 PM
  21. jshannon#IM's Avatar
    This client has been held up for so long that it is revealing why closed-loop products are harmful to users!

    The iPhone is a great product, but there is clearly something going on on Apple's end that is harming those who would like to get full use of their purchase.

    I'm a long-time Apple fan, but am disgusted by this.
    07-10-2009 11:53 AM
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