SMS Character Limit Increase
Today we increased the allowed number of characters for SMS messages from 150 character to 450 characters. However, messages with >160 characters will be broken down into chunks of 153 characters before being sent to the recipient’s handset. Each “chunk” is the equivalent of sending one sms. So sending a 450 character text will require three “chunks” which cost Lodgix 3x as much as sending a 150 character text. That’s why we’ve been slow to increase the character limit. Most modern phones are now smart enough to combine those “chunks” into one seamless text.
Sending SMS messages to your guests for directions, door codes, etc.. will assure that the most important information gets read (and delivered) in a timely manner.
TripAdvisor Integration is Complete
Occasionally a small bug or two is found, however in general the connection is stable. TripAdvisor has some odd nuances with their connection which can at times take a few days to resolve, however overall the connection is working well. We will be adding rate multiplier and commission functionality later this week.
Support for Wifi Locks from RemoteLock is Pending
While we have always supported the algorithmic locks from ResortLock, the wifi locks were not supported. That will soon change. We have some testing to complete this week, however this additional functionality should be live soon!
Recode of Owner Documents
The file system for owner documents has grown dated and slow for some accounts. We are currently experimenting with using the Amazon Elastic File System to store owner documents (owner statements, rental agreements, etc..). Hopefully the tests will go well, and soon that functionality and interface will get a much needed performance upgrade. Keep you posted!
Beta Calendar Tape
We spent a few more days on improving the beta calendar tape recently. One of the most frustrating components was how dates were displayed. We returned to the look and feel of the previous calendar for that, and we added it to the bottom of the calendar as well (helps those with larger numbers of properties)
Additionally we improve the spacing at the top of the calendar to make it more functional on all screens and mobile devices.
More work needs to be done and we are committed to making additional incremental improvements in the coming months.
A great deal of time continues to be spent on updating our core systems to more recent versions of Python and Django. Lodgix has been around now for 11+ years, and every few years significant effort must be made to update the core systems to keep them current. This takes a lot of time and testing. However once complete it allows us to introduce new interfaces and new coding techniques that take advantage of the improvements present in more recent versions of Python and Django. This update cycle should end in May and then we will have 18 months or so where the entire team will be free to code new functionality!