We have pulled Layar from the App Store due to crashes

Dirk Groten December 18, 2009

Yesterday Layar v3 was published in the App Store. After a flood of complaints that the app crashes for many users, we’ve decided to remove the app from the store. Sorry, sorry, sorry.

We had issues already since the very first launch of the iPhone app. Unfortunately these issues were due to bad memory management decisions right from the start, something that we could not easily fix without completely re-engineering the app. There is some old code in there that is buggy and we don’t know exactly where the bug is. Since the app worked fine for 80% of the users (and on all our testing devices), we decided to move on to v3 before we would rebuild the framework of our app. We’ve tested v3 thoroughly internally and did not have any issues with crashes when submitting to the App Store. In fact, we still cannot reproduce the crashes that many of our users are reporting right now.

The percentage of users with crashes has grown too much with the launch of v3 to justify keeping the app online. We don’t want our users to be confronted with an app that is unusable due to systematic crashes. We take great pride in our product and are very serious about delivering high quality to our users and our developer community. We’ve already started re-engeneering the app, but this won’t be finished in a matter of days, rather a matter of weeks.

Our sincere apologies to our developers who put a lot of effort into making great content for Layar v3 that can now only be viewed on Android. We are proud of the layers you made and we will put all our efforts into making them available on the iPhone as soon as possible.

Dirk Groten
CTO Layar

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  1. Joe

    Another reason people should leave the IPhone and get Android!

  2. RG

    Thanks for your honesty. I look forward to a fixed version hopefully soon

  3. Michael

    Interested to see this app arrive in Windows market place for Windows phones. Good luck with rewriting the iphone app

  4. jdpower

    the second vowel in engineering is 'i'

  5. Drew

    The Droid version still won't let me log into a layer: I log in, go back to layar, and it's as if I never logged in. Nor are any settings (like distance) preserved. Also, layer overlays will vanish if I go to the settings and then back to the camera view. No crashes per se, but the basic functionality isn't really working.

  6. Drew

    Oh: two other problems: when something like a tweet is set literally on my position (which happens a lot when imperfect location information defaults things to the exact same coordinates), the screen is basically covered up by the nearby item.

    Also, there's no way to disable the default settings for screen turning off while you look around, meaning the droid will go into lock mode while you are looking (but not yet interacting).

  7. Will the V2 still be available on the App store? That would be good enough for our purposes right now at least.

  8. Richard R

    Good luck guys.

  9. Eric

    No one will remember if the app was late.
    Everyone will remember if the app was unreliable.
    I appreciate your candor and commitment to quality.

  10. James Standen

    Good for you to be open and address the issue with integrity and Transparency.

    Best of luck.

  11. dennis

    we all love layars and I personally appreciate your dedication to quality. you won't find me complaining about time. please fix and update when ready, I'll be waitng patiently to see this awesome app again :) happy holidays~ from Korea

  12. Ronald Boyd

    I, too, appreciate your honesty in updating us about the app. Although v3.0 got rid of my issue with false reading of out-of-memory, it introduced another quirk having to do with the distances that it displayed for search results found, so I look forward to the revamped version.

  13. Jon

    Put it back on line with a warning.. I don't mind resetting my iPhone occasionally because of a product, if the product is good enough to warrant my attention..

    Oh.. i guess I've been using Windows too long.

  14. honest and only action you could take.

    it's time Apple gives us some way of doing proper beta testing of our iPhone apps. Now its all (the world including Apple) or nothing (yourself and max 100 testers with a horrendous distribution method called Ad Hoc provisioning).

    We need a beta store!

  15. Rico

    Have you news ? When Layar will come back please ?
    It's a very good app !

  16. NoMeursy

    Finally a software developer that’s puts quality first.
    Saw this app on an iPhone and now that I own a iPhone myself, the first app that I wanted to install was layar, but it’s not available (for good reasons.)
    If there is a mailing list to announce the new release, please put me on it.

  17. Shark

    Come on guys check your spelling! You have a typo in your header!

    Looking forward to downloading layar.

  18. Denise

    Thanks for being so responsible. I look forward to the app when it is available!

  19. SinGoon

    I'm looking forward to release a Layar app..
    please come back~~~~~

    ToT /~~

  20. Singoon

    I'm looking forward to release the Layar app..
    Please come back..

    ToT /~~

  21. nono

    I'm looking forward to release the Layar app..
    Please come back..

    ToT /~~

  22. That's very bad news! We have just bought an iPhone 3GS especially for the Spotted by Locals app we have developed...

    Hope it will up again soon!

  23. Have you been testing on different versions of the iPhone OS? Memory management rules are the same in all, but internals behave differently, so memory bugs can show up on one and not another. Also, delayed execution objects (NSTimer, NSInvocation) don't retain what they call back to. If a view controller is popped from the navigation stack but a timer of invocation is still pending then it will crash when it goes off. You won't spot these testing on wifi in your lab. Test on 3G and edge, so that the network delays mean sometimes you navigate away before delayed invocations go off.

  24. Dan

    Refreshingly honest and upfront.
    Can't wait to get my hands on the new version - as long as it doesn't disappoint. Take your time, get it right and enjoy the praise.

  25. nanoSin

    Please come back~~!! iPhone ver...


  26. Kim

    언제 다시 나오나요?
    When does it be re-launched in Apple Store?

  27. Bryan

    OK- so when is this coming back? It has been quite some time- give us an update Layar folks!

  28. Alistair Lowe

    Yes please come back, I formatted my iPhone and have lost my existing 3.0 app that never once crashed!

    I'm wanting to do demonstrations of layars for some of my students.

  29. ash

    Any date of an estimated rerelease yet?

  30. Alex Jones

    When will Layar be available in the uk

  31. Steve

    3.0 has never once crashed for me on my 3GS

  32. Erik

    As much as I understand your decision to go for quality, I really miss this app after receiving a new Iphone. Please bring it back to us Apple-users!

  33. gerry

    Please bring it back, buggy or not. I'll put up with crashes until you fix it up.

  34. The main crash that happened occurred when you chose an layer, and clicked on the "layers" button to go back to viewing available layers, it would automatically crash then.

  35. chris

    Why there is no information in Apple's app store that Layar would come back?

  36. Any idea when the iPhone ver of Layar may be resurrected? I would also be happy to run a buggy version until you get it fixed, maybe it would help identify where the issues are?! :)

  37. Please make sure you also read the following post

  38. geerz

    I wonder what influence on Layar reliability has fact of jailbreaking. It would be unfair if reports from jailbroken phones caused that application was withdrawn...

  39. Lars

    Can't you just re-launch it with a beta stamp? If 80% of users are happy I think it would be the right move.

  40. That's a pity, but I look forward to the fix and new releases for iPhone. Very interested in having a look at the new developments...

  41. Prost

    I was wondering when Layar will be givin' a second chance in Februari. Just less than 3 weeks to go in Feb.

  42. Tom

    Any updates on when the iPhone version will be availbale?

  43. Nicky

    End of February is coming quickly but there is no news about the new version. I hope it was already submitted to the App Store.

  44. Chris

    Guys, just checking to see when Layar will be re-released for the iphone? I was bragging to my buddies about it, went to show them, and it was gone.

  45. KennyYu

    Great American's spirit; doesn't cover things up. Looking forward to see it available in App Store...

  46. Tim

    I don't see many developers with this kind of honesty. I will be back for the new release. And keep this attitude up!

  47. @KennyYu
    Is that a joke? These people are Dutch, it's a dutch product.

  48. Hey, Layar is working fine for me - I've had it on my iPhone for three or four months - I work at the apple store, and all the other specialists covet this app; it's problems, hell outta yelp or pretty much any other search app....

  49. paul r

    Layar has been my favourite iPhone App for 4 months, and I often showed it off to my mates. To them it was one of the temptations to get an iPhone!
    then i went and deleted a load of stuff by mistake, and now can't get it back!!
    please fix it quick

  50. Just wanted to let you all know that we are on schedule and hope to release the app end of the month. Thanks for your patience.

  51. I was looking for in regards to Apple's amazing new device. Cant wait

  52. funny just downloaded the update for my iphone 4 and iOS 4.1 crashes all the time.
    erased and reinstalled the app.
    Crashes always -again.
    This is a mess.

  53. I really relate to that post. Thanks for the info.

  54. Amazing blog as well as interesting things you got here! I definitely learned a lot from browsing several of your earlier posts too and thought we would drop a inquire into this!

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