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Confirmed: App issues with Android version 4.4.2

22 April 2018

It's one of those things you dread hearing- your device may be too old.  But it's also one of those givens with this technology-centric generation, that obsolence seems to develop at a faster pace than ever before. 

In the last couple of weeks, there were some members with login issues, but the error message was different. Instead of 'Invalid Login', the error prompt was 'Something is wrong, try again later."

Since the change to a more secure login to the members-only part of the website, there were a number of members who couldn't log into the app, but the issue wasn't technical- it was simply the fact that they weren't aware that the login for the app was the same login they created for the NZMCA website (and they couldn't remember that they changed their Members Portal login to start with!).

But then a different error message was cropping up- the slightly more ominous sounding, 'Something is wrong, try again later'. After weeks of testing which involved making sure that the logins were correct to start with, and login tests onto different devices, the cause for the issue has been uncovered and it's simpler than you think, though no less disappointing- that devices specifically running Android mobile operating system version 4.4.2 could no longer support the current version of the NZMCA Travel App.

Google names all its Android versions after sugary foods and this version is code named KitKat which was released in 2013; four years old may not be that old in human terms, but it's a different story in the life-span of technological devices. In fact, Android versions from version 5 and below are already considered 'obsolete' and may not be able to run newer apps. 

I actually had a hunch that it was the case and I had told a member over the phone, that the app will always be the newest version of itself, but that the rest of us will get older (unless you replace your device every two or three years). 

So what do I do?

1. Not all Android phone/tablet manufacturers provide updates, but double check in case your device can be updated. Find the settings icon; open it and look for 'About Device', (on a tablet, you may need to tap the General tab at the top of the screen first); it's at the top of the menu, and depending on the version of Android you're running, may read "Software Update" or "System Firmware Update"; tap to update (many versions of Android are device-specific. Your device will only search for updates that are compatible with your device).

2. If unfortunately, your device cannot be updated it doesn' mean that you can't use it anymore. If it's primarily for texting or calling, it's still perfectly fine (that's what phones are for in the first place!). 

3. You can download and install the app on other (and hopefully newer) devices. You're allowed to download and install the app on as many mobile devices as you want- just make sure that they are newer versions of Android! (Android version 6 and above).

4. Alternatively, if you currently have one mobile device, then use the online Travel Directory; it has the same exact information as the Travel App.

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