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You can install Wikipedia Beta alongside your current version of Wikipedia for Android, so you can test our new features before they go live for all Wikipedia for Android users. Your feedback will help us fix bugs and decide what features to focus on next. (See also: bug reporting.)
Contribute to development
The Wikipedia Android app is completely open source and welcomes contributions from all.
Learn more on our Getting Started page.
- An announcement went out to Indonesian Wikipedia to share about V1 of Patroller Tasks. In the announcement we requested feedback about the feature. There have been positive feedback thus far. Our engineers demoed the filters for Patroller task V1, images can be found on the Anti Vandalism project page.
- Image Recommendations is available on Beta for experienced logged-in users. You can see a video of the feature on the image recommendation page.
- We made minor improvements which included updating the native overflow menu to match device theme (T343969). We also fixed a bug that pointed users to the Google Play Store when trying to access the Android app. (T345826).
- We fixed an issue where when marking all notifications as read" it now persists as expected T342263.
- Members of our team presented at Wikimania:
- There were decisions we had to make regarding use of the ReverRisk model or Goodfaith and Damaging models as a result of ORES deprecation. You can read more about that as well as review designs for onboarding on the anti-vandalism project page.
- We welcomed Bonaventura as our community ambassador for the Indonesian Wikipedia Community as we work on Patroller Tasks, the first feature for the Android anti-vandalism tools.
- The results of user testing for Patroller Tasks are now available on the feature’s project page.
- We have very early insights about Machine Assisted Article Descriptions based on 33 days of data available on the project page.
- We released some updates to the app that included:
- Amboxes are now visible at the bottom of each page in the Android app in the Page Issues section T319016.
- Content licensing has been updated to CC-BY-SA 4.0 T340927.
- We no longer use the VisualEditor API for edit notices. We switched over to the core edit notices API for more accurancy T337101.
- All language variants should now be available T338328.
- Article Short Descriptions Captcha is now presenting as intended T331027.
- Addressed a bug where saved articles weren’t always available offline as expected T342321.
This month, we updated our app to enhance user experience and consistency by aligning with Material 3 guidelines, which involved key component revamps and theme transition, ensuring we maintain a modern and user-friendly experience for our users.
- We completed the Machine Assisted Article Description experiment, you can read more about it on the project page.
- We transitioned the app's theme from the legacy MaterialComponents and AppCompat to the contemporary Theme.Material3 in the main styles.xml (T332060). We purged all AppCompat references and established a base to implement further styling changes to align with new design requirements.
- We revamped the app bar component (this is the component that generally provides contextual actions and options) to ensure consistency and improve user experience in line with Material 3's updates (T330879). A reusable component was developed, streamlining design across all views. Changes include h1-app-bar typography predominantly and h2-app-bar on specific pages (T330753, primary color for titles and icons, progressive color for primary links, and secondary for de-emphasized CTAs (T330645).
- All capital letters for CTAs were eliminated, and the spacing details were adjusted as per the referenced image. This new component has now been integrated across the app.
- We also specifically updated the navigation bar component (this is the component that specifically provides navigation actions and options across the app) to align with the Material Design team's new Material 3 guidelines (T330804).
- This included adapting to new color specs (T330645) and type styles (T330753), modifying sizes and spacing as per Figma details, and introducing filled/bold states for Explore, Saved, Search, and Edits icons against a pill-shaped background. Inactive state changes feature a new "placeholder" color group (T330645), with bold states for Explore and Search icons and outlined icons for Saved and Edits.
Elevation was removed, replaced by a 0.5dp top border in the 'border' color group. We also changed how truncation is handled:
- We aligned the common button component with Material 3's specifications, developing new reusable button styles for the codebase for wide app usage. We created five button types: primary, secondary, tertiary, text-primary, and text-tertiary, all allowing an icon and employing sentence case with h3-button type style (T330753). Sizing includes a 24dp x 24dp icon size, a 40dp high colored background, and a 20dp rounded corner radius. Spacing involves 8dp vertical and 14dp horizontal padding, with colors defined as per T330645. These buttons are now integrated across different parts of the app.
The solved a bug where users were seeing an incorrect warning message. We made changes so users are only prevented from using certain features if they are specifically blocked from those areas, improving the overall user experience (T336789).
- In our pursuit to enhance communication within the community, we have recognized the need for a structured framework and rhythm in establishing synchronous and asynchronous interaction platforms for our community members. To this end, we are utilizing various platforms such as Signpost, the movement forum channel, and Wikimedia-l (T329387) for these interactions.
- To facilitate our mission, we have initiated several structured communication spaces:
- The feedback loop page on MediaWiki: Here, we list issues reported by users via play and app store reviews, support emails, MediaWiki talk pages, and the village pumps.
- Monthly updates: We publish these on the team's MediaWiki pages: Android updates and iOS updates.
- The movement strategy forum: We've created a group specifically for app-related discussions.
- Apps office hours: This is an avenue for our community to connect with us directly. We've decided to conduct these office hours quarterly. Based on the attendance at the first office hour, we intend to host the next one in September 2023. We will then evaluate this method by the end of 2023 to make an informed decision about its future in 2024.
- The mobile-l list: We use this platform to email crucial updates.
- Newsletter creation: For those seeking more frequent updates, we're in the process of creating a regular newsletter dedicated to the apps team.
- Engagement on user posts: We actively engage with users on their posts that mention our apps, especially on village pumps.
- To facilitate our mission, we have initiated several structured communication spaces:
By creating these structured spaces, we hope to streamline our ad-hoc communication and make our interactions with the community more effective and comprehensive.
- We've revised our Android app's typography over the past month, rectifying inconsistencies and introducing clear guidelines for a unified type style (T330753), better design handoff, and consistent user experience.
- We've also updated the background colors of the mobile-html theme to enhance the user experience (T332823) further.
- Additionally, we addressed the burgeoning color scheme of our Android app to streamline the design and engineering handoff. We aligned our color groups with Codex and iOS, created new color specifications and names, and reduced the number of colors used in the app.
- Our efforts resulted in updated color and style names, values, and groups and a more efficient design system for all themes on Figma (T330645).
We also fixed a number of bugs:
- This month we fixed a bug in the Wikipedia Android app that was preventing the automatic triggering of a search in the search activity by intent despite the query being successfully entered into the search bar (T335139).
- We also corrected an issue that inaccurately suggested users could dismiss a warning notification when editing article descriptions in a language other than the intended one; the warning message has now been updated for clarity (T333984).
- In another fix, we rectified a bug that failed to correctly apply the dark theme to the preview HTML during its display (T335035).
- We resolved a formatting issue in the contents pane for certain articles, such as "Gibson Les Paul," where raw CSS code was displayed instead of the intended section title (T335344). Lastly, we fixed a bug in the Android app that led to the omission of untitled links in references, displaying only the reference number, in contrast to the proper display on the mobile browser version (T335250).
- This month we were able to release the Machine Assisted Article Descriptions experiment which will be running until mid-May. We also made some minor improvements to communication features and Shareable Reading lists.
- In addition to our feature work, we test piloted a fundraising message on Japanese Wikipedia in partnership with the online fundraising team (T332230) and fixed some regressions related to backlinks not working (T332706). We also fixed a bug where sharing an image from the app via e-mail message would cause the HTML content to be added to the message's title (T333055).
- This month, we revisited the Nearby/Places feature that was previously a part of the Android app but was removed due to performance challenges. With the possibility of open-source maps improving over time and changes in tolerance towards Google Maps, we thought it was the right time to consider reinstating this feature (T324068).
- Our investigation led us to three potential mapping services: Google Maps, Mapbox, and MapLibre. Each of these options came with its own set of advantages and drawbacks. Google Maps was easy to integrate and required minimal maintenance, but it wasn't open-source, wouldn't work on devices without Google services, and was not free. Mapbox, a well-known SDK, presented licensing issues and costs associated with map-loads, leading us to conclude that it might not be the best fit for our needs.
- We found MapLibre, a community-maintained open-source fork of the Mapbox SDK, promising. It offered fluid and responsive zooming and rotating, and we could apply custom styling to the maps. However, it would increase the app size from 14MB to 25MB and would lack some functionality typically expected in a "maps" app.
- As part of our next steps, we sought feedback and votes from our potential users on these three options. The discussion was open until the end of March, with the outcome to be shared in April. Concurrently, we worked on the technical aspects of the solutions, particularly MapLibre, focusing on resolving issues related to sprites and fonts. The feedback received from users, along with our technical feasibility studies, will guide us in making the final decision on the mapping service to be integrated back into the Android app. The timeline for bringing fonts and sprites in house from another team would be the end of June.
- See full details of the Nearby exploration.
- We also created all the non-UI mechanics needed to fetch and display machine-generated article descriptions (T329903).
We fixed a number of bugs, including:
- The voice input button appears even when voice input is unsupported T329237.
- The watchlist item shows an incorrect byte count for Page Curation log item T328453.
- Navigating from Saved to Explore causes Overflow and Filter to remain onscreen T329675.
- Missing page titles for non-Main namespaces T324090.
- Correcting the misleading labels between the Commons Picture of the Day and the Wikipedia Picture of the Day T326903.
We also adjusted the placement of the rollback, thank, and undo buttons in Watchlist Diff view on Android T326894.
As we prepare to add image recommendations to the app we did some initial research about allowing communities to turn off the feature through community configs T327535.
The team evaluated the risks of Machine Assisted Article Descriptions and added them to the project page.
We also made adjustments to limit the maximum data stored offline T328677.
- Updated message for 2022 English fundraising T325691.
- We fixed the following bugs:
- User contribution links now open natively https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T321485.
- We solved a bug where search class in any language showed HTML code T322826.
- Formula background color is now consistent with the dialog background when in dark mode T322171.
- Empty talk pages have a new design that explains what a talk page does T322137.
- We solved a bug of being unable to save images from articles T323359.
- Fixed an issue with adding an image caption T320617.
- Native contribution history filtering now aligns with notification filtering T318735.
- Users will now remain in-app when tapping Wikimedia Commons notifications T321263.
- Added 'wikipedia://` scheme for URL handling that facilitates exchanging links for more explicit use by the app in cases where implicit HTTPS handling might fail or be impractical T322876.
We made some minor improvements:
- Text editor button alignment. T320853.
- It's easier for logged-out users to know that they must log in to be able to subscribe to conversations on the talk pages. T318584.
- Editnotice no longer interferes with "edit here." T318039.
- Link preview dialog didn’t show image correctly, now it does. T295624.
- The reference pop-up was empty when containing automatically numbered link. T285280.
- Corrected duplication of suggested edits cards being displayed on explore feed. T319689.
The app now has native user contribution page. T310270
The team is exploring the possibility of allowing users to see articles related to topics they are interested in via the explore feed Your interests are our priority, that’s why we worked on showing articles in the explore feed. T318386
Last month we improved Syntax highlighting within the editor, during that time we also made other improvements for parity with the iOS app. Those improvements included monospace, changing the theme from the editor and adding a link preview. T313223
We provided a pathway for viewing a file from the image tag screen. T316985
Pa’O Wikipedia launched in July 2022 so we’ve added it to the application. T317843
Some users were experiencing an issue where they did not see the copy link option on their device so we provided the action directly in the application. T315387
This month we also made minor bug fixes, which included:
- A bug related to the preview text when there was a time signature. T314003
- Fixing "unrecognized value for parameter" error when trying to insert media. T318738
- Honoring magic words for edit summaries on Russian Wikipedia. T317504
You can now easily add images from Commons to a Wikipedia article through the Android app editor using the image icon. T312094
Back in June we introduced Namespace search hints, since that time we’ve noticed a 2.1% increase of unique users visiting namespaces appended in the search such as User, Portal and Help. We also noticed a 2.2% increase in pageviews to those namespaces. The overall goal was to raise awareness about the ability to search for users, discover portals and go to help pages. T311534
We also did a number of small bug fixes that included:
- a bug where the alphabetical sort was not producing the correct order T316957.
- Panning images that are in the gallery when an image is zoomed in; this issue was sent to us by one of our users. T317186
- When long pressing a link to an article that is already open, the app now takes users to the tab where the article is open T311325
- A bug that was appearing when you sent thanks to editors. T315382
- We disabled article description edit Call-To-Action for non-articles. T315237
- Fixing the audio button on an article. T315062
- Optimizing the 'Customize toolbar' tooltip. T312523
- Removed "Profile" from references to user pages in the Android app. T315242
- Improvements to syntax performance T164936
- Showing warning message from Abusefilter when editing article description. T313994
- The team working on the web interface of editing wanted to learn what, if any, implications did updates to edit notices in the Android app yielded to understand if it had negative effects on edit completion rates (T314534). With the understanding that the team released the feature in November 2021, we were able to determine the updates did not have an adverse impact based on the numbers below.
|Month||Android Edits||Reverts||Revert Rate|
- The team fixed a bug that originally allowed users to click edit article descriptions on protected pages when logged out, where wouldn’t receive a notice that the page was protected until they hit publish. Now users receive the edit notice earlier in their workflow.T313267
- We worked on editing page protection notices to show only one time instead of twice on the app.T313308
- We fixed a bug also where the horizontal scroll was inconsistent.T312667
- We also updated the coffee roll which can be seen on the communications project page.
We worked on minor Bug Fixes and Enhancements
- A bug where videos were not playing (T309105).
- Unifying time formats throughout the app(T304628).
- Solving a user bug with the Belarusian language(T311877).
- Being able to see the text box when typing an edit summary.(T311706).
June 2022 Communication Tools Enhancements and Understanding our Current Audience
As our team prepares to shift to new projects we wanted to gain an understanding of our current audiences and where we should put forth additional effort to engage audiences that are underrepresented depending on the goals of our projects.
Depending on if a project will be to support the growth of a wiki vs. maintain the maturity of a wiki, community, or equity gap, our team will evaluate which regions the effort is applicable to and do direct outreach to engage those audiences. While the goal of our projects is to empower anyone that is an app user and prioritize mobile first workflows, we will use the data above, which will be updated annually to determine who we should put extra effort into reaching out to in alignment with the Movement Strategy .
Smaller bug fixes and updates
We also fixed some minor bugs and UX improvements to :
- We made the info button in the suggested edits interface more consistent (T308758)
- Text size not adjusting as expected (T310405)
- External links creating tab redundancy (T310416)
- Raw HTML appearing in language selector when a title is italicized (T309970)
- Tapping on a page’s first edit on Watchlist produces a 404 (T308652)
- Long translations are cut off in bottom toolbar (T306282)
- Send user to expected destination when clicking “cur” link of an old edit (T309523)
- Enabled the ability to edit non-namespace pages (T305604)
- Show parent categories (T307785)
- Enabled full page editing (T103622)
Fix minor glitches within theme bottom sheet (T308349)
Communication tools updates
Additionally, we made significant enhancements to talk pages, the customizable toolbar, namespace search and revision history. The details of the updates can be found on the Communications Project page.
New diff view with rollback capabilities
New article talk pages
New user talk pages
New threading for talk pages
July 2021 - May 2022 Improving Notifications and Collaboration tools on Android
- During this fiscal year the Android team is working to ensure communication through the Android app is seamless and promotes collaboration. All of our updates will be on the corresponding project page.
- Members of the English Wikipedia community raised a concern about the Suggested Edits Short Descriptions Suggested Edits task. The concern was that the task was resulting in a high number of low quality edits that were being reverted. When Suggested Edits was released by the Android team, it was the first time WMF explored micro contributions. It has been a catalyst project for StructuredEdits in the Newcomer Homepage, a project led by the Growth Team. The Android team historically had a barrier where users were required to be logged-in and have at least 5 edits prior to accessing suggested edits. The barrier of being logged in remains, however, the barrier of having 5 edits was removed in 2020 based on positive data. With the concern of the quality of edits being raised by the community, the Android team researched reverts and rewrites to understand the severity of this challenge. In October 2021, 2.61% of descriptions added through the Suggested Edits tool were reverted and 0.38% of translations were reverted. During this time, 11.50% of description changes were reverted, it is worth noting description changes are not conducted through Suggested Edits. There was a hypothesis by the team and community that rewrites could be a more accurate indicator than reverts, for that reason, the team investigated the rate of rewrites, which indicated only 2% (31 of 1471) of short descriptions were rewritten during a 30 day sample period. With the team currently focusing on improving collaboration tools, we do not have enough evidence that the Suggested Edits tool is producing such a high number of bad edits that we must pause our current work to intervene. However, the next phase of our working starting July 2022, is to improve the quality of edits coming out of the Android app. During that time, the team will do a deeper dive and engage with the community across language wikis to understand what enhancements we should focus on. The enhancements can include better patroller tools, better onboarding, tenure requirements for certain tasks. Based on some very preliminary research, only 17 unique users of 422 from a 30 day sample used the Suggested Edits tool as a gateway to wikitext editing that had no reverts. Other users started with wikitext and then became suggested edits users. Based on this information, we recognize there is more work to do on our user journeys, and we will certainly pursue that work starting in July. Until July, the Android team will continue to work on improving collaboration tools, another highly requested improvement from members of our community.
25 May 2021 - Image Recommendations MVP in Production and Improvements to Error Handling
- The Train Image Algorithm task for the Image Recommendations in production. Within the first two weeks of deployment, over 2800 unique users have annotated over 20,000 image titles across a multiple language wikis. Our full insights are available on the project page.
- The team made updates to the way error messages are displayed, which will be released in the production version of the app in the coming weeks. You can read more about it on our Communications project page.
- We made bug fixes including a fix to the way Mainpage was displayed in the app and ensure search images were properly displayed in right to left languages. You can review our most recently closed tasks using this query
28 April 2021 - Image Recommendations MVP on Beta and 2021 Android App Roadmap
- The Train Image Algorithm task for the Image Recommendations is now available in the Beta version of the Android app. You can see a GIF of the behavior and learn more details on the project page
- We've created a MediaWiki page about our efforts to improve communication functionality in the Android app
- Our 3-5 year product roadmap is now available. It includes further improvements to communication functionality, patrolling tools, increased editing pathways, and personalized reading experiences
- We've also released an update that fixed formatting issues on the main page, updated copy changes on the snackbar from 'My Lists' to 'Saved', and other bug fixes for dark mode and image captions
30 March 2021 - 500K Huawei installs, Suggested Edits Evaluation and Image Recommendations User Testing Analysis
- We've reached 500K installs on the Huawei app
- The team onboarded Commons Ambassador, Rhododendrites to help us understand how Suggested Edits impacts Commons users. The outcome of the analysis will be represented on this page.
- The team analyzed user feedback of the Image Recommendations MVP prototype. We will be dedicating a two week sprint to incorporate the feedback.
- Released update to production that included minor bug fixes for TalkPage and Watchlist and showing non-main namespace pages in-app through a mobile web treatment.
24 February 2021 - Designs for Image Recommendations
The Android, Structured Data, and Growth teams aim to offer "Add an Image" as a “structured task”. More about the motivations for pursuing this project can be found on the main page created by the Growth team. In order to roll out Add an Image and have the output of the task show up on wiki, a "minimum viable product" (MVP) for the Wikipedia Android app will be created. The MVP will enhance the algorithm provided by the research team and answer questions about behavior usage to further explore the concerns raised by the community.
The most important thing about this MVP is that it will not save any edits to Wikipedia. Rather, it will only be used to gather data, improve our algorithm, and improve our design.
We recently created a project page to chronicle the project and shared the designs that will go up through usability testing. We encourage your feedback.
2 February 2021 - Release of watchlist and user talk pages
We're excited to present our latest release of the Wikipedia Android app, available now on the Google Play Store (or as a standalone download for devices without Google). Here are the major highlights from this update:
* Watchlists: Your watchlist is now accessible from the main screen when you are logged in. Tap the "More" menu at the bottom and select "Watchlist." If you have multiple languages selected in the app, the Watchlist screen will merge your watchlists from those language wikis. You can also choose which languages to show by tapping the language icon in the toolbar at the top. Tap any of the items in your watchlist to see a detailed diff screen for the selected change. And of course, to add any article you're currently reading to your watchlist, tap the top-right menu in the toolbar, and select "Add to watchlist."
* Talk pages: Article talk pages and User talk pages are now presented natively. When reading an article, the corresponding talk page is accessible by scrolling to the bottom and selecting "View talk page." User talk pages can be accessed from various places where user interactions might occur, including your watchlist, various push notifications (e.g. messages left by other users on your talk page), and other users' and article talk pages.
In addition to these major updates, this release has plenty of bug fixes, design refinements, and performance optimizations. Check it out, and as always, we welcome your feedback! We are asking for Watchlist feedback on Phab task T273254 and user talk page feedback on T273253. You can also leave feedback on Talk:Wikimedia Apps/Team/Android/Communication.
Special note: This release is dedicated to the memory of our late colleague and friend Bernd Sitzmann, a brilliant developer and a wonderful person, without whom the app wouldn't be what it is today. He will be missed.
4 September 2020 - Update on Push notifications for editors + Google Play Services
Later this month, the Android team will be starting to implement push notifications within the app. Users will be able to opt out of receiving push notifications if they wish, and users in countries where it might be possible to identify them personally through their receipt of notifications will not receive them at all. As previously mentioned (see update: 9 March 2020), push notifications will require us to implement Google Play Services.
We have also received numerous reports through the Play Store and our help channels that users on Android 4.4 are experiencing connection problems with the app due to a certificate issue. The Android team will implement Google Play Services immediately for users on Android 4.4 - which is the only way to fix that certificate issue and allow those users to once again use the app properly. We anticipate a release by 15th September 2020.
22 May 2020 - Update on Push notifications for editors
More information on the proposed project phases and deadlines can now be found on the Product Infrastructure team push notifications page. Any questions related to the Android implementation specifically can still be left on the Android team Talk page.
9 March 2020 – Push notifications for editors
Beginning in around June 2020, we will begin working on push notifications. We think these will be useful to people who want to keep up with their watchlists and other editing-related notifications on the go, without continually needing to check the site. As with most other Android apps, we’ll be using Firebase for our push notifications, which requires users to have Google Play Services on their phone. If you prefer not to use Google Play Services, we will provide a workaround at the appropriate time.
We’ll continue to update this page as we get closer to implementation time. As with our other features, users who don’t want notifications at all will be able to opt-out entirely, or enable only the specific types of notifications they want, e.g., revert notifications or talk page mentions.