Publish a Layer
In this section, we will discuss how to publish a layer and manage layer maintenance after it is published.
Once your layer is approved, you will see a new option to 'Publish' your layer on the publishing site. So, now it is up to you when you want to make it public. The two advantages of giving this right to layer publisher are:
- You can choose your launch moment. You may want to announce this via a press release or a launch event, so we give you control about the moment it is launched.
- You may also want to change the GetPOI URL to a live location. You can edit your layer after it has been approved. Make sure though that the main purpose of the layer is not changed after our approval. We will monitor that and this may breach our Terms.
To publish a layer, click on the "Publish" button for this layer under "layers" tab on the publishing site.
NOTE: only people with publisher right can see the publish button.
NOTE: From 1st August 2012, publishing a vision enabled layer will be charged. Please check out our pricing page on the website for more information.
Your layer is published. Anyone can now find your layer and view it. It is still possible to edit your layer. Note that any changes you make after your layer is live are visible to all users (nearly immediately). Some tips:
- Layer information is cached on the client for about one hour. So changes you make to the look & feel of your layer may not appear immediately to end-users.
- If you change the URL for the getPOI, remember the previous point. You will get requests for the old POI for a while.
- We recommend you to create a duplicate test layer to check everything before copying the new settings to a live layer.
- Add tags to your layer if you find out that people cannot find it. This is effortless and can be easily done on a live layer. It will have immediate effect.
Updating a published layer
If you plan to make big changes to your layer, for example to upgrade from v3.x to v4, we strongly advise you to use a test layer (new layer) to check everything is working rather than making changes to a published layer:
- You can duplicate an existing layer, just change your poi URL and test your new webservice with the new POI response.
- When you're ready, you can just point the published layer to the new poi URL if that's the only change. But we'd prefer you to request publication first (see below).
- If your layer definition has many changes, request publication and use your new layer to replace the existing published layer.
- We recommend you to request publication for your layer if the changes are significant: Our review process is a technical review, we'll give you good advice on how to make a better user experience.
- Once your new layer is approved for publication, you can use it to replace an existing published layer. This way, users won't see a new layer, so for example if they made it a favorite, it will still be there, just updated.
Layer management life cycle
So far we have discussed the main steps in layer management, from layer creation to layer publication. The following diagram illustrates the whole layer management life cycle.
In total, three roles can be associated with a layer.
- viewer: who can only test a layer on the mobile device.
The allowed state changes per role are listed below:
|All states||Add/remove viewer||✓||✓|
|All states||Assign/change publisher||✓|
|All states||Edit metadata||✓||✓|
|In development||Request for approval||✓|
When a layer is created, the developer of the layer is also the publisher. However, they can assign it to another publisher. Only the publisher can manage the layer after it is approved for publication. If you can not see the publish button, please check whether you are the publisher of the layer. If not, please ask the layer publisher to publish it. If it is urgent, we can also help you with that (please create a ticket in http://devsupport.layar.com )
If you are the publisher but still could not see the button to publish an approved layer. Please let us know.
Once a layer is approved, the following meta-data is NOT allowed to change anymore:
- "Listing & indexing" tab,
- layer title
- "Permission" tab,
- publisher of a layer
Some more explanations:
- "add/remove viewers": layer developer/publisher can add viewers to a layer. This means that this viewer can see a testing layer on the phone. It is very useful when you want to share layer development progress with other people, such as clients.
- "assign/change publisher": The ownership can be changed from one publisher to another publisher. layer developer is by default the layer publisher when a layer is created. With this function, the layer developer and publisher are separated.
- during the layer testing phase, the ownership can be changed by current layer publisher.
- After a layer is published, the ownership could only be changed by Layar staff with admin right.
- "duplicate" a layer: A layer content can be easily duplicated by using this function. In certain cases, this will accelerate the speed of layer development.
- "unpublish" a layer: After a layer is published, we introduce the new status 'unpublished'. Publisher should be able to unpublish a layer. In the unpublished status, a layer:
- is not visible anymore in the galleries (search, popular, featured, etc...
- is still visible and can be used by users who have either bookmarked the layer (favorite) or purchased the layer.
- can be published again. So this is the way for developers to do maintenance on their layer: new users cannot see the layer, existing user can call the layer. Publisher has the obligation to maintain the layer or should return a custom message to the existing users saying that the layer is under maintenance, etc.
- "freeze" a layer: After a layer is unpublished, it can also be set to frozen status, A frozen layer:
- is not visible anymore in the galleries.
- may still be visible in favorites and purchased but cannot be accessed anymore (error message: 'layer not available anymore').
- not visible under "Layers" tab anymore to developers.
- cannot be unfrozen anymore except by admins.
- could only be deleted by admins.
- "delete" a layer: If a layer is not needed, it can be deleted.
- developers can delete a layer when a layer is in testing mode. NOTE that the layer name is still not available even after it is deleted.
- Only layar staff with admin right can delete a frozen layer.