Hey there Panda Pals! Our last release had some great new features to test and you answered with some great feedback, so it was just great all around! Great job everyone. No I’m not done saying ‘great.’
This check-in is by the books: We’ll catch up on how the last release went and discuss a couple things we are currently working on.
One focus of our last release was an answer to a longtime feature request: In-note search, especially on iOS. It was a solid start with find-and-replace options and our unique spin on surfacing results within the note. We also snuck in an initial version of OCR search, which means Bear 2 and Panda will be able to search the entire note and inside of images and even PDFs! More on that in a minute.
An example of Panda returning search results from the note first, then diving into the PDF. Note the spinner in the search box indicating the search is ongoing
The other major addition was a good handful of export tools, which are one of the quiet tentpoles of the Bear experience. Many of the new Editor features in Bear 2 have taken some extra TLC to get right when exporting elements like tables, link previews, and footnotes.
As I said, your feedback on the previous release has been… excellent! We shipped a couple of bugfixes pretty quickly after the initial release, and we’re also working on sharing more export options between macOS and iOS.
Put simply: we’re doubling down on search and spending some time reworking hardware keyboard support for iPad. We have a good start with in-note search, now we’re working on improvements especially for users with large attachments.
Search is pretty fast, but things get complicated when Bear has to dive into attachments like, say, a 1000-page PDF. For situations like this, we’re working on an async search mechanism. This means Bear will return some of the ‘easiest’ results first—basically, text in the note and small attachments—then continue search into larger attachments like the aforementioned PDF. The idea is to avoid a search results traffic jam, of sorts.
A work-in-progress mockup of the new iPad editing toolbar
As for the iPad keyboard, we’re investigating some new developer tools in iOS that we hope can improve our formatting and editing options on the iPad. The current way our formatting bar stacks on top of Apple’s Predictive keyboard is… ok? But it, too, could be better.
This Panda check-in is coming to a close, please set your seats and tray tables to their upright position. Electronics can stay on, though, because we still want to hear your great feedback! We’ll check in again once we get closer to another Panda release.