I’m concerned

Automatic replies to pings

I am wondering if there is a way to set echoecho to automatically respond to a request for location. I plan to use this app on my son's iphone so I can check on where he is. Not that I am spying or anything but it is nice to be able to check his location when he is late.

I used it today to get his location because he was more than 1 hour late getting home and I did not get a response because his phone was in his backpack and he did not hear it to respond.
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  • Hey John - great question. In fact automatic replies to echoes (or "pings" as you have called them) is one of the frequent uses we see with family members (or very close friends).

    The way you activate this is very easy - but it slightly differs depending on the type of mobile phone you (or rather your son in this case) are using.

    If it's an iphone or an android phone - just click the outline of the star next to the name of the person you would like to automatically reply to.
    (on other phones like symbian or blackberry that do not have a touch-screen you need to bring up the context menu for a particular echo message and select autoReply)

    If you want to turn this feature off - just click the star again or delete the echo.

    that's it. Thanks for asking - and stay tuned because at the end of this month we will launching some awesome new features and the app will be even easier to use.
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  • The problem with this though is when you click the star outline to allow automatic respones to pings it appears to activate the GPS module in the phone as it's icon appears on the top bar of the iPhone and never goes off. I am concerned this will drain the battery quickly.

    Why can't this feature be restructured so that when one person does ping the other (and the star has already been highlighted for automatic responses) Echoecho then wakes up the GPS module, gets the location, sends it and then turns off the GPS module again?
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  • nickybee (Official Rep) July 13, 2013 07:27
    Hey Steve - a very good question - and one that I have asked Apple repeatedly.

    You see - Apple doesn't allow this ;)

    Specifically the thing they do not allow is the "waking up" of the GPS module.
    Basically when an application is in the background it cannot respond to incoming push notifications. (in our case something like "Alex says where are you?") in an intelligent way.

    Actually it doesn't even know they have come in - only the operating system knows that.

    So basically on iPhone we are forced to hack our way around this functionality - and do the intelligence (the bit that you referred to as "if the star has already been highlighted") on the server side.

    On Android - it of course works exactly as you imagined/described.

    It makes perfect sense for iOS to work this way also and it would be a fairly trivial change to allow this - but....Apple doesn't listen.
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