DVPRemote App Gets Virtual Roku Keyboard

DVPRemote, the 99 cent app that turns your iPhone into a virtual Roku remote control, has recently been updated to version 1.4. New in this release is a QWERTY keyboard, which greatly simplifies text entry as developer Phil Irey demos above. Roku’s WiFi interface doesn’t actually include hooks for individual keys, so DVPRemote has essentially mapped the location of each key and monitors your current keyboard position to handle the heavy lifting. “Technology Podcast” requires a modest 19 clicks on DVPRemote, versus the 74 you’d press while navigating the keyboard using directional buttons.

The reason I’m a few days late covering this item is also notable. Phil’s never gotten an update through Apple’s approval process in less than 2 weeks. However, DVPRemote 1.4 was approved in a mere 3 days (during CES). Even more surprising, given the assumed backlog while the app submission process was closed December 23rd – 28th. And, whereas, Phil’s app would have been outright rejected in the past, Apple has politely requested he make changes in the next release:

Thank you for submitting your update to ‘DVPRemote’ to the App Store and for providing a new demonstration video.  During our review of your application we found it is using a private API, which is in violation of the iPhone Developer Program License Agreement section 3.3.1; “3.3.1 Applications may only use Documented APIs in the manner prescribed by Apple and must not use or call any private APIs.” While your application has not been rejected, it would be appropriate to resolve this issue in your next update.

Looks like Apple’s instituted some positive app approval process changes (aka “chilled out”) to the benefit of both developers and customers…