UX Recorder – Screen Recording App for iPad & iPhone

UX Recorder – Screen Recording App for iPad & iPhone

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Ever wanted to perform mobile usability testing on with an Apple iPad or iPhone? Now you can without having to jailbreak you iOS device.

Foraker Labs in Boulder, Colorado, have developed an app that allows you to do screen recordings on a iOS device. Not only does the app record the screen, but it also records audio, and it uses the front facing camera to also record the user.

UX Recorder App

Foraker Labs’ app UX Recorder is available for free in the Apple App Store. The free application will allow you to do a 30 second test recording. You can also purchase a Single Session recording for $1.99, or a 5 Session Pack for $7.99. However, if you want to get the most out of it, you can purchase an Unlimited Sessions upgrade for only $59.99.

That might seem like a lot of money, but after I tested it today, I can honestly say, it is worth it! I will demonstrate this in an example video a bit later in this blog post.

Feature Rich

What makes UX Recorder so good? Well, for starters (I am currently using version 1.2.2) not only does the app record the device screen, but it also records user gestures such as taps, swipes and scrolls. On top of that, the app records audio input and also utilizes the front facing camera (iPhone 4+ and iPad 2+) to record the user.

Other features include:

  • Export recorded video sessions (H.264-encoded .MOV format) to your computer’s desktop via iTunes, or to Dropbox
  • Easily pause and resume session recording.
  • Create multiple projects to organize testing sessions.
  • Create multiple sessions within a project.
  • Create bookmarks to save Web site URLs for use during testing sessions.
  • Share bookmarks with iCloud.
Before you ask… when recording, switching from Landscape to Portrait mode will cause the video to look out of whack (for a lack of a better word). Other than that, the sky is the limit.

UX Recorder v1.3

Hunter Hillegas, a Senior Mobile Developer at Foraker Labs, told me that the team is currently working on version 1.3 of the app.

Version 1.3 will see improvements to the built-in browser so that it can support HTML 5, and the update should also see added support for fullscreen recording (no URL bar anymore).

UX Recorder iPad Session

UX Recorder iPad Session

Why Only Mobile Websites?

Now, this is a issue that I have heard before, and it is something that Foraker Labs has run into, too. On their website, the Foraker Labs team reports that:

Our understanding of Apple’s approval guidelines are that this is strictly prohibited. We will continue to pursue being allowed to add this functionality. In the meantime, we have found it useful at times to prototype iOS apps in HTML, and use these prototype websites for user testing. This is obviously not practical for certain types of apps… but for others is a workable solution that we’ve used at Foraker Labs.

Apple’s tight restrictions are preventing anyone from building such a functionality into an app… officially, because as you can see in a previous iOS usability test recording, it is possible.

iPad Kindle Store Example


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About Matthew Niederberger

Matthew works as Conversion Optimisation Manager at Ziggo BV. In his free time he enjoys family life as well as digging into online user research material whilst frequently generating some of his own, which he freely shares here on actualinsights.com.

Comments

  1. Nice article Matthew, thanks for reviewing this.

    I’m always looking for easier ways to test and this certainly adds to the list of available approaches. In particular I’m thinking this might work well with Axure prototypes, which can mockup the more complete app process – did you get a chance to test any Axure code to see if it works?

  2. pboersma says:

    Interesting tool, and smart licensing system. May have to try it out on the mobile app I’m developing now…

  3. This sounds extremely interesting. I can already see how useful it will be testing mobile skins and templates on both iPhone and iPad.

    I attended a UX seminar awhile back which was on the use of facial expression coding (ever watched Lie to Me? – That stuff) in UX, so the use of the camera is extremely cool.

    Hope I win the copy!

  4. Bryan says:

    Sound interesting but is expensive…

  5. Hi,

    this sounds promising. What’s really important though is that you see all the interactions with the device in the recording including

    – taps
    – swipes (including user holding down)
    – inputs

    In the recording above I see that the user types in a search term, but for some reason the keyboard isn’t shown in the recording. It is important to see that because in this example for instance, the keyboard will cover half of the screen.

    Curious to see the future of this app!

    Good luck!

    Phil

  6. I like the idea of UX recorder, but would pike to see the following:

    1) longer recording for people testing it out casually (youll get more exposure as well… the 30sec test is just too short)
    2) Camtasia style indication of when and where a user taps the screen.
    3) Option for whether you want your or the person’s face recorded.

    data recording of the points where a user touched… so it can be analyzed

  7. FreddyMan says:

    I really enjoy this app! Thanks for showing me!

  8. joostvanveen says:

    What a great app! I am coding a responsive design at the moment and this would be great to demonstrate user experience on different devices to our client.

  9. Please, I am begging you (getting on knees) give me the giveaway, your app is awesome but I can’t pay sixty bucks for unlimited, I want this really really bad!! PLEASE!

    (I am sorry if you are annoyed by this post I just REALLY want to win)

Trackbacks

  1. [...] was one that I found by accident while performing a search in the iTunes store for User Experience. UX Recorder, by ForakerLabs, was my first experience with an official app that could be used for user testing [...]

  2. [...] Cohdoo on your iPhone, or another audio app on your laptop, but you could also invest in apps like UX Recorder or Magitest. These apps are Apple approved apps, so there are available in the App Store. The apps [...]

  3. [...] about my review of UX Recorder and my tips on how to use UX Recorder in [...]

  4. […] not allow you to perform screen recordings outside of the app itself. Like I demonstrated last week UX Recorder is a good example of an app that will allow you to perform mobile website tests on any iOS device. […]

  5. […] about my review of UX Recorder and my tips on how to use UX Recorder in […]

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