Session Release Roundup #8: Light mode arrives — and much, much more

Session Release Roundup #8: Light mode arrives — and much, much more

September 04, 2020 / adminRelease Roundup

Hello world! It’s been a while — but the Session team have been busy, busy bees, hammering away on an absolute mountain of fixes, quality-of-life improvements, and, oh, freakin’ light mode!

That’s right, you asked, and we heard you. Light mode is now available! But more on that down below. This round of releases has fixes and improvements to almost every part of the app, on every platform, and we’re super excited to be sharing these updates with you. 

Light mode (is just the beginning)

The first thing you’ll notice when you fire up your newly-updated Session client is a bold new look for the UI — light mode is here! Prefer to live life on the dark side? Never fear. Just head into Settings and toggle between modes with the handy switch.

  • Light mode! (iOS, Android, Desktop)

  • Light mode is now the default interface mode. (iOS, Desktop)

  • Interface mode follows system settings for light/dark mode. (Android)

We’re always working on making Session more accessible to our international communities, and this round of releases is no exception. There’s a shiny new Persian localisation for mobile clients, improvements to the iOS Chinese localisation, and betas for a number of new languages on desktop!

  • Improved Chinese (simplified) translation. (iOS, Android)

  • Persian translation. (iOS, Android)

  • Added beta translations for German, French, Italian, Russian, Spanish, Portuguese (Brazil), Chinese (simplified), Spanish and Persian. (Desktop)

  • Added RTL text support. (Desktop)

Session is a great way to send photos securely and privately, but there were a few issues getting in the way. With these changes, enjoy a smoother, more reliable photo-sharing experience.

  • Fixed an issue with small photo captions not showing up. (iOS)

  • Sending photos is now more reliable. (iOS, Android)

  • Saving photos on Android Q should now work again. (Android)

  • Fixed a crash that could occur on inserting an emoji into a photo caption. (Android)

  • Photo captions now show fully. (Android)

Session isn’t just perfect for sharing photos — it’s great for sending other file attachments securely too. Uploading and downloading attachments should now be more reliable and consistent.

  • Attachments sometimes wouldn’t download after receiving a push notification; now they do. (iOS)

  • Attachments without a width and height are now handled. (Android)

  • Attachment uploads should now be more reliable. (Android)

Session’s new light mode has the UI looking better than ever — but there were some more improvements to be made to the interface. These QOL changes will make Session’s UI shinier than ever.

  • Replies now correctly show the display name instead of the Session ID. (iOS)

  • Cleaned up the message that’s shown when you change the disappearing messages timer. (iOS)

  • Various UI improvements. (iOS, Android)

  • Any display name is now allowed. (iOS, Android)

  • Build number now shows in in-app settings. (Android)

  • Added a list of blocked contacts in the Settings panel. (Desktop)

Looking beyond improvements, there were some annoying little bugs that were making Session’s UI a little bit frustrating. This small mountain of UI fixes should make the interface more consistent and reliable.

  • Fixed link previews. (iOS)

  • Fixed a bug that could make a conversation get stuck with an unread message. (iOS)

  • Fixed an issue where profile pictures sometimes wouldn’t display. (iOS)

  • Fixed an issue where if you tapped a notification while in the settings screen, it wouldn’t take you to the conversation screen. (iOS)

  • The muted label now disappears correctly when the mute period expires. (iOS)

  • Mentions now show up correctly in notifications. (iOS, Android)

  • Fixed various minor UI issues. (Android)

  • The app now correctly sends delivery receipts (Android)

  • Made app UI closer to mobile, when possible. (Desktop)

  • Fixed emoji panel overflow. (Desktop)

Open groups are a great way to have big conversations about big ideas — or just catch up with all your friends. With this round of bug fixes for open group messages, profile pictures, and more, open groups will be more reliable than ever.

  • Fixed an issue where messages could show up in duplicate in open groups. (iOS)

  • Fixed open group profile pictures. (iOS)

  • Messages should now be ordered correctly in open groups. (iOS, Android)

  • Fixed open group message deletion. (iOS, Android)

  • Fixed a bug that could cause missing open group messages. (Android)

  • Increased timeout for joining open groups. (Desktop)

Closed group users, never fear — open groups aren’t hogging all the love. We have some big updates for closed groups on Android, including closed group editing and preparation for shared sender keys, which will enable larger and more reliable closed groups in the near future. And for our iOS users, stay tuned for the same improvements making their way over to iOS shortly!

  • When a member of a closed group leaves it now shows their name rather than their ID. (iOS)

  • Closed groups now have a disappearing messages setting. (iOS)

  • You can now edit closed groups. (Android)

  • We prepared the app for shared sender keys, which will allow larger and more performant closed groups. (Android)

Restoring an account with its recovery phrase was a bit wonky on mobile — these changes should make account restoration smoother and more reliable.

  • Fixed various issues related to account restoration. (iOS, Android)

And speaking of reliability, we’ve nailed down and fixed up a number of bugs across the board. The biggest fix was nailing down a particularly nasty bug that was eating up data and battery in the background on Android — hooray! With that, and the rest of these changes and fixes, everything from message sending to app launching should tick over more reliably than ever.

  • The app is now better at handling faulty and unreliable Service Nodes. (iOS, Android)

  • Various crash fixes. (iOS, Android)

  • Disabled multi-device. (iOS, Android)

  • Fixed an issue that could cause excessive data and battery use. (Android)

  • Fixed a crash that could occur on sharing your QR code. (Android)

  • Fixed an expiration timer compatibility issue between iOS and Android. (Android)

  • Updated the app for the latest versions of Android. (Android)

We’ve made some improvements to encrypted sessions on both Android and iOS to fix those ‘bad encrypted message’ errors some of you have been seeing.

  • Session reset now works correctly. (iOS)

  • Session reset now correctly shows you a confirmation when finished. (iOS)

  • The app should now recover from bad encrypted messages. (iOS, Android)

Up next: Bigger, better closed groups

That was a lot. But catch your breath and get ready for more, because the next round of updates will be here before you know it. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be hard at work preparing to activate shared sender keys across all platforms, which will bring larger and more reliable closed groups, as well as quite a few more UI improvements and bug fixes — stay tuned for more on that soon.

Thank you!

As always, it’s feedback, comments, and suggestions from users like you that keep us working on the issues that need fixing and the improvements our community wants to see. Keep the feedback coming, and we’ll keep working hard to build the best version of Session yet. Thank you for all your feedback and support!

The Session team

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