1. Is there an Android version of BirdTunes?
There is currently not an Android version of BirdTunes, and after careful consideration we have regretfully decided not to pursue developing one at this time. Basically, we have limited resources to devote to BirdTunes development, and believe that at this point those resources would best be devoted to improving the iOS version rather than creating a new version for Android. We certainly have nothing against Android, and will periodically reassess our situation with the hope that we will eventually be able to offer BirdTunes to Android users.
2. On which types of devices does BirdTunes run?
BirdTunes is an iOS application, so it runs on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad devices. There is currently not a special version of BirdTunes for the iPad, however, so it runs in portrait-only mode on the iPad (but see the next question). BirdTunes is not available for non-iOS Apple devices, such as the iPod classic and the iPod nano.
3. Is there a special version of BirdTunes for the iPad?
There is currently not a special version of BirdTunes for the iPad, but we do plan to develop one. Initially, the iPad version of BirdTunes will be a lot like the iPhone version, but it will take better advantage of the larger iPad screen.
4. I’m having trouble downloading and/or installing BirdTunes. What do I do?
Since BirdTunes is a relatively large (about 300 MB) application, it takes longer than most other applications to download and install, so in many cases the solution is just to be patient. If the download or installation process truly fails for some reason (for example, because the process is interrupted), the simplest course of action is often to delete whatever portions of BirdTunes may be present in your iTunes library and on your iOS device and obtain a fresh copy of BirdTunes from the App Store. The App Store will know that you have already purchased BirdTunes, so it will not ask you to pay for it again.
5. Does BirdTunes require an internet connection to run?
No. All of the sounds and photos of BirdTunes are integrated into the application itself, so it does not require an internet connection to run. You can take BirdTunes into the field with you, as far from the reach of the internet as you dare to venture, and it will remain fully functional.
6. What do the buttons in the upper right hand corner of the browse view do?
These buttons, indicated by the red arrows below, are called the browse mode buttons. Exactly one browse mode button is selected at any one time, determining how species are organized in the browse view. Tapping the left button displays species in alphabetical order by first name (as in the left screen shot below), while tapping the middle button displays species in alphabetical order by last name (as in the middle screen shot). Tapping the right button displays groups of species in taxonomic order (as in the right screen shot), and tapping one of these groups takes you to a group view (not shown) displaying just the species of that group.
7. How do I clear a search so I can see all of the species again?
Tap the clear button at the right end of the search bar (indicated by the red arrow in the figure to the right) to clear the search bar text, and then tap the Done button in the lower right hand corner of the keyboard to dismiss the keyboard.
8. Can I search by scientific name instead of common name?
Yes. By default, BirdTunes searches for bird species by common name. You can search by scientific name instead by prefixing the letter “s” followed by a space to your search string. For example, the search string “s picoides” will find every species with “picoides” in its scientific name.
9. What does the button to the right of the play/pause button in the tracks view do?
This button is called the playback mode button. Tapping it repeatedly cycles through the four different playback modes offered by BirdTunes, with the button’s icon changing to indicate which playback mode is currently selected. The current playback mode determines what happens when BirdTunes finishes playing a track. The icons representing the four playback modes and a description of each mode appear below.
In play one mode, BirdTunes stops playback at the end of each track.
In repeat one mode, BirdTunes plays a single track repeatedly.
In play all mode, BirdTunes plays one track after another to the end of the track list and then stops playback.
In repeat all mode, BirdTunes plays one track after another indefinitely, cycling back to the beginning of the track list when it reaches the end.
10. How do I add a species to the favorites list?
First, navigate to the tracks view for the species by selecting the species in the browse view. Then tap the small bird image in the upper right corner of the tracks view. This will flip the tracks view over to reveal the photo view, which includes a button labeled “Add to Favorites” (or “Remove from Favorites” if the species is already on the favorites list). Tap this button to add the species to the favorites list.
11. Where do I find the BirdTunes settings?
Like many other iPhone applications, BirdTunes has settings via which you can customize it. Most users will change these settings infrequently, so they are accessed through a separate, built-in iPhone application called Settings. Within the Settings application, the BirdTunes settings are accessed by tapping the BirdTunes item in the list of settings categories.
12. What does the Auto Play setting do?
Currently, there is only one editable BirdTunes setting, called Auto Play. This setting determines whether or not BirdTunes automatically plays the first track of a species when you navigate to the species’ track list.