Early discussion of the 2020 survey

I took the time to read through the responses, or at least the ones I could view.

It seemed to me that people want three main things, in order:

  • A larger playerbase
  • An app (or official / better one)
  • Proper rengo support.

An app! Yes, please!!!


And lets make the review and analysis tools user-friendlier to use!


There is an unofficial Android app (not sure if it remains under active development) but none for iOS. I would gladly pay to support the development of an iOS app!

I’ve tried the unofficial app. I really appreciate the effort of the developer, but it misses features I find useful on the site.

By the way: What are the features a dedicated app can provide, but not the website?

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For those that wish to see a better app: why do you feel an app needs to exist at all?

Do you currently use the site on a mobile device/browser?

What are the main issues with the current mobile experience?

What features could be better addressed by an app rather than just an improved mobile site?


Main problem with using the site on a mobile device is that it is hard to place the stone accurately sometimes. A possibility to drag & drop the stone combined with either an automatic zoom when placing a stone or highlighting the grid lines would be a nice addition.


I was one of those wanting a mobile app. I get controls are hard for a phone with a small screen. I’ve seen some apps that offset the stone with a ghost while touching the screen so you can see where you are going to place. The best way to handle it is to make sure the player can pick what style they like to place the stone. I use a Galaxy Note 9 so I got a stylus with me at all times.

Also if OGS did have native app support means more people will play.

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I only use the app to play. I find it much more appealing than the site on my phone.
The app shows your list of games better rather than one thumbnail per screen. And you just scroll to see past games with thumbnails rather than having to tap tap tap to get to game history and look at each game…
And the game screen itself is cleaner. The site sometimes send to open the game page halfway down and you have to scroll up and down to get the menu items, half of which are not relevant on mobile. And if the chat bar is anything like messages on the site where you can one see one line then I don’t find it really useable.

In short I think there is definitely scope for a mobile first way of playing on OGS in addition to the main site. Or I guess if the main site were really mobile optimized that would also be good but I imagine that would be more difficult to implement.

The only thing I miss on the app is better review functionality with analysis branches. But trying to do this on mobile via the main site is quite painful, I keep missing or tapping things wrong.


I personally struggle to use OGS on phone via the main site, for which reason if I do play I play against bots so that I can happily resign if I misclick.

I’ve never tried the app.

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I am totally fine using the website over an app if the puzzles page sizes properly on smaller screens, the chat box doesn’t cover up game chat and audio doesn’t pause other audio. The controls to move through a game tree are a little awkwardly placed on some devices.

I mostly play on an ipad. I like placing stones on it better than using the track pad on my laptop, and I use SmartGoKifu to review most of the time. I might switch to sabaki because I don’t have an iPad keyboard yet, but I like that SmartGo looks through professional games for joseki and fuseki as well as keeping my in person game records and online records in a convenient place.

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Shouldnt we wait until theres statistical significance to start drawing conclusions?

One thing to be aware of is that, as far as I can see, the questions about “what other servers do you prefer and why” were only asked of those players who said that they do play on another server. Also, the “what device” question.

This means that the pie chart of “what server do you prefer” is not telling you what you might first assume.

The pie chart of “what server do you prefer” is telling us what servers are preferred by the 5% of respondents who actually ever play anywhere other than OGS.

The other 95% of respondents only play on OGS.

And the device question only tells us what device is used by 5% of people who play on other servers, if I understood how it worked correctly.


Yeah, I wasn’t asked what device I play on. I primarily play on OGS, but rarely on a computer. I think a lot of people, especially those in the correspondence crowd, are in a similar boat.


If people are on the topic of the mobile version, I do find that the ai review bar for selecting which bot does the review, is a little too close to the navigation buttons (go forward/back through moves and the play button) at least on safari on iPhone 6.

Close enough as in I keep hitting it when pressing the forward and back button a few times.

(I guess I’m not replying to bugcat directly, but just reference other people talking about the mobile version :slight_smile: )

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There’s a reason it’s called “early discussion” :stuck_out_tongue:

Yes! Happens to me all the time!


I have to say, I play a lot on a Pixel OG and I don’t feel that my experience is lacking.

For me, personally, a few UI tweaks perhaps (trying to dismiss a notification is hit and miss with my fingertip).

But placing stones is easy.

And I only cycle through my active game pages and do not access (much) any other part of the site.

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The obvious one: notifications.

Native mobile apps are usually faster and more stable.

No, only on my laptop.

When I tried using the website on Chrome/Safari for iPad, I would press the wrong thing often, notably pausing the game when I wanted to use the score estimator (as a TPK).

In addition, when I switch to another tab (such as a news article) or another app, then come back, Chrome/Safari for iPad will take a long time to reload OGS.