Session Release Roundup #10: Mega edition

Session Release Roundup #10: Mega edition

January 28, 2021 / adminRelease Roundup

Closed groups grow to 100! Plus: Protocol changes, performance improvements, and more

Hello, it’s me, haven’t seen you in a while. It’s been a few months since we last piped up, but don’t worry — we’ve been hard at work tippy-tapping away, writing, wrangling, and working on brand new code to build a bright future for Session. 

It took a lot of coffee, elbow grease, and rocket fuel, but the Session Protocol is done! And the update is live… as in, now!

The new protocol makes Session smoother than a triple cream brie — so if you’ve tried Session before and put it down, now is a great time to pick it back up and give it another spin. 

Without further ado, welcome to the biggest Session Release Roundup in history! Let’s roll.

I can’t believe it’s not butter! Session: Now smoother than ever

We’ve been talking about the Session Protocol for a little while now — and it’s out. Thanks to Session’s new super-slick protocol, you should notice top-to-bottom performance and reliability improvements across the entire app. 

  • Finalised implementation of the Session Protocol. iOS, Android, Desktop

  • Multiple crash fixes. iOS, Android

  • Improved message sending reliability. Android

Note: If you haven’t already updated to the latest, Session Protocol-based version of the app, make sure to do so — older clients can no longer communicate with the Session Protocol-powered latest versions.

Lots of you have been asking about closed group sizes. We hear you. Closed groups are now 5x bigger. 

  • Increased maximum closed group size to 100. iOS, Android, Desktop

  • Fixed open group profile picture bug. iOS

  • Improved closed group reliability. iOS, Android

With supercharged closed groups, you’ll want to get all your mates on Session. We’ve added a handy in-app invite button to help you and all your friends go green. 

  • Added in-application invite button. iOS, Android

  • Fixed issue preventing you from copy-pasting Session IDs. Android

Push notifications have long been Session’s white whale. Turns out creating reliable push notifications in a decentralised, end-to-end encrypted, hardcore private messenger is… tricky. After a long journey, Ahab Niels has conquered the beast. 

  • Increased push notification reliability. iOS, Android 

  • Push notifications now preview message content and sender, instead of displaying generic ‘You have a new message’ notification. iOS

  • Push notifications now always successfully appear. Android

  • Upgraded background polling (slow mode). Android

A few months back, Session IDs received a security upgrade. At first, we let people keep their old Session IDs if they wanted to — but (if you haven’t already) the time has come for everyone to get themselves a shinier, safer, smarter Session ID. 

  • Made Session ID upgrade mandatory. iOS, Android, Desktop

In 2021, no chat app is complete with just text messages — you have to be able to send memes, voice messages, videos, and animated Powerpoint presentations. Sometimes iPhone users weren’t getting their attachments, leaving them longing for their multimedia fun.

  • Fixed onion request issue which caused occasional attachments download failure. iOS, Android

  • Attachments now download automatically after opening the app via push notification. iOS

Voice messages are great — maybe you want to add a personal touch, or just don’t have a hand free to mash a message on your keyboard. We’ve given voice messages some upgrades for when a text just isn’t enough.

  • New and improved voice messages design. iOS, Android

  • Fixed voice messages not playing when device is muted. iOS

  • Voice messages limited to one minute duration. iOS, Android

Link previews are handy to make sure you’re not about to get Rick Rolled — or at least just give you an idea of where that link is heading. Now, Session will show previews for each and every link you’re sent. 

  • Enabled link previews for any any URL. iOS, Android

Free and open access is an important part of Session — and that means everything from the under the hood design all the way to accessibility features like VoiceOver. This update is packing some much improved VoiceOver support for vision-impaired Session users.

  • Improved VoiceOver support. iOS

Just because you remove someone from a closed group doesn’t mean the party has to end. Closed groups weren’t working properly after people were removed  — but we’re making progress on fixing that up.

  • Fixed some issues in closed groups after user removal. iOS, Android, Desktop

Session has tapjacking protection baked right into the app, but the message that displays when these safety measures kick in was showing up incorrectly — all fixed now.

  • “Interaction temporarily disabled for security purposes” dialog no longer displays unnecessarily. Android

Guess who’s coming back, back again? Multi-device!

That’s right, now that the Session Protocol is in the field, our old friend multi-device is slated for a comeback. We decided to put multi-device on the bench late last year, but after that temporary time-out, it’s time to bring back what has become one of our most-requested features. 

We’ll be putting a lot of work into getting multi-device working, but the good news is that it should actually be much easier now that the significantly streamlined, purpose-built Session Protocol is implemented on all platforms. 

Closely trailing after multi-device and bigger closed groups in the most-requested-features marathon is account restoration. Not just Session ID restoration — but full restoration including messages and contact history. We’ll be digging in and starting on a fully-fledged version of account restoration in our next sprint. 

Thank you!

The climb towards full implementation of the Session Protocol has been an epic one. Thanks to everyone who has already updated, and followed us along the way towards its creation. Now that the Session Protocol is established, Session is well and truly off to the races.

So long, and we’ll see you again soon!

— The Session team

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