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Quick heads-up for my Beta buddies: Later today we're going to be running a contest to win one of our Samsung Galaxy 7 phones! This won't be on our website, but rather you should see an email and an interstitial ad about it later today.

You can also follow us on Twitter (@textnow, natch) for that and other nifty announcements.

Hey, everybody! Quick note to let you know that there's no beta notes this week, as I am away on vacation, but we'll be back next Friday. This week's beta release is mostly a roll-up with a hotfix that was released earlier this week, and it's available now at the Google Play Store.

Hey, everybody! Sorry for the late one tonight. Luckily, we're Canadian and there's two things in Canada that never sleep: rust (as Neil Young taught us), and patch notes.

It's a small one for the customer facing side this week. Lots of behind the scenes code work that is laying some foundations for future improvements/releases.

One weird bug that was crushed into bug-dust this week was some weirdness around blocked contacts, where you were still able to write something in a message field if you went through a specific, bizarre series of steps. Not quite Konami-code bizarre, but still. It didn't actually message the blocked contact, it just let you write a message and then NOT send it. It's like a Moebius-strip of wrong. But no more!

Another one involving the dialing screen popping up if you were already on a call and another call comes in. Didn't happen very often, but "not often" isn't "never", so bug crushed.

And that's about all for tonight. As per usual, the beta will be available through your Play Store a little later tonight. Also, it's Canadian Thanksgiving, so if you detect a whiff of pumpkin spice in these patch notes, now you know why.

Surprise! Looks like your weekly serving of hot, fresh beta updates are out of the oven early! Here's what's cookin' this week in the upcoming 5.30.0 release:

First, some changes:

- Made a great improvement to now unread messages are handled. Let's say you get a pile of messages from a contact, but you're not paying attention to your phone. (I know, seems crazy, but stay with me here.) If you have a pile of unread messages in a conversation, we now jump to the first UNREAD message and place that at the top of the page, with a "New Messages" indicator at the bottom of the screen to let you know there are, well, more new messages.

- Fixed an issue with some older devices (Kit-Kat and earlier) showing the "Can't call 911 from TextNow" message in the wrong place.

- Fixed an issue where the screen would sometimes flash for a picosecond when switching to an ongoing conversation. You're already wrecking your eyes looking at a phone all day, no need to make it worse.

- And a pretty big one: Free users have noticed stickers and gifs which will pop up if you type in certain keywords, which you can then add to your conversations. The key thing here is you can now turn that feature OFF in the Settings menu, under Messaging.

Otherwise, lots of bug fixes, including one that fixes something somewhat upsettingly called a "cursor leak". Not sure I want to know more about that.

As per usual, you can grab all the hot goodness from the Play Store a little later this evening. And as always, let us know what you think!

This hasn't been working lately when I call a number it would say dialing but it never dials and then automatically hangs up the phone before the person I call answer

Hey, guys and gals! I just wanted to point out a new feature we added last night to TextNow. It's not strictly a beta thing, but rather something we turned on for everybody: Passcodes.

One of the most-often feature requests we've had over the years was an additional layer of security. We break it down on our Support article here: https://supportwireless.textnow.com/hc/en-us/articles/115004956106

I hope one day you start supporting gifs from the TextNow app. That's a feature I use a lot, but sadly the TextNow app doesn't support it yet.

WHY IS THERE NO CUSTOMER SERVICE NUMBER TO CALL???
EVEN FOR THOSE OF US WITH PAID SERVICE OUR ONLY OPTION IS EMAIL???

I want to know if i purchase a new TextNow phone can my old phone be used by someone else on a different network?

Happy first day of fall everybody! Not that you'd know it here in Waterloo, where it's currently 29 degrees Celsius and, apparently, going up to 40 degrees tomorrow. I believe that's approximately a million degrees Fahrenheit.

This week it's a round-up of little things as we end the quarter. We're working on something pretty exciting things this Christmas, which I can't tell you about yet because the engineers all know where I live. But it's gonna be pretty cool, and I think a lot of our customers will dig it.

We made a pile of minor improvements. Some stuff around the activation messages and the like, that only really apply if you're popping in the TextNow SIM for the first time. But some other more interesting stuff too, like:

- Fixed how blocking a contact's number works. Previously, if you blocked a contact's number, it would also block all the other numbers on that contact's information. That's presumptuous, so we've changed it to only block the SPECIFIC number you were trying to block.

- Fixed a thing where if you managed to record a 0-second video, TextNow would still try to send it. That's like getting an envelope in the mail with nothing in it.

- Some little fixes around how timestamps are shown as time moves on. (See, time is actually a flat circle....)

- One super-specific problem with the app crashing when tapping open a large image file on a Nexus 5. Remember those? Good phone.

- Nice UI fix where selecting a message just darkens the bubble instead of the whole row.

And that's about it. As per usual, the beta (5.29.0) will be up on the Play Store a little later tonight. Have a great weekend, folks!
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