For the past few weeks, our team has been working with many of you to gain insight into your use of Infinit and understand the value you find in the app. We set out on a mission of discovery, and returned enlightened, enthused and excited. What we learned was often surprising and at times shockingly apparent. But what really makes this blog post and the corresponding product improvements possible are all of the amazing people in our community that volunteered their time to engage with us and offer up invaluable feedback.
Without further ado, the 4 amazing features we’re launching today are:
Until today, both the sender and the recipient had to be connected at the same time to exchange files. With this new version of Infinit, if your recipient is offline, we’ll buffer (aka upload) your files, so that when your recipient comes online, he or she is 100% sure be able to download the transfer.
This feature is great for those of you that work with teams spread out across the world, in various time zones, or if you’re constantly on the go and can’t leave your computer behind.
Download Link via Email
Although we had originally conceived Infinit as an app-to-app way of sending files, many of you have expressed frustration over the fact that your recipient doesn’t want to download Infinit to receive files. So today, if you type an email address in the recipient field and click send, your files will be uploaded and an email will be sent to your contact. When your recipient clicks through to the website from the email, they’ll be able to download the files directly without the app.
If you deal with big clients regularly, we totally get that it’s hard to push them to download a new tool. Or, if you’re a freelancer and you’re constantly cycling through collaborators, it’s time consuming to pitch them to install an app to receive files. This feature will help you be more effective when delivering files. You can rest assured that anyone you send files to is 100% able to access them.
Many of you had never used a drag and drop menu bar app like Infinit. It was silly of us to think that once you installed the app, butterflies and unicorns would guide you along a rainbow to file transfer nirvana.
Inspired by mobile device onboarding, our real-time, step-by-step guide has been conceived to take you through the experience of receiving a file and subsequently your first sending experience.
Before today, if you were offline, you would be completely unaware if a friend or colleague was trying to send you a file. If you were logged in, but got up from your seat and missed the desktop notification, you might not notice the subtle change from black to red of the menu bar icon.
In order to keep you in the loop, and avoid destroying your desktop’s interface by adding more Infinit logos every which where, we opted for email reminders. If you’re offline, you’ll get one email for each transfer sent to you. If you’re online, but missed a transfer, we’ll send you a recap of your pending transfers at the end of the day. Nobody likes being bombarded by emails, so we’ve conceived this with as little intrusion to your inbox as possible.
We hope you enjoy the new Infinit. If you do experience any bugs or issues, let us know by tweeting @infinitdotio or sending a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll be quick to respond. Over the next couple weeks, we’ll also be refining these new features, to make your experience even more silky smooth!
You’re probably well aware by now of the Heartbleed (CVE-2014-0160) vulnerability that powers the OpenSSL encryption mechanism across much of the Internet’s vast infrastructure. This issue allows data that is usually protected and secure to become exposed. You can read more about Heartbleed here.
Most major online services from Dropbox to Amazon and Gmail were affected. Because we also use services that rely on OpenSSL, we were also affected.
We took action early last week to patch any vulnerabilities and resolve all issues related to Heartbleed. We do however, encourage you to change your password by heading to our forget password page.
This past Sunday marked the season premiere of Game of Thrones.The series has garnered a global following that has never before been attained. The show’s hashtag #GameOfThrones took over the Twitterverse in the past week, with 1.69 million tweets related to the show according to Forbes. In addition, the first episode saw one of the most massive open distributions via Bittorrent with more than 300,000 seeders at one point according to TorrentFreak.
In order to commemorate this momentous occasion, and to express our own passion for the show, we collaborated with our favorite organization, the NSA, and the world’s greatest CEO, Barack Obama, to bring you the first episode in what we call the Infinit Theatre. Enjoy!
We hope that no one was too inconvenienced by the outage Friday and thought that this would be a good opportunity to start blogging about some of our technical challenges.
When updating our servers and client on Friday afternoon, we encountered an unexpected problem with our notification server. This server is used to push transaction and user status information to clients using an SSL TCP socket.
Part of our update process is killing old server instances and launching new ones which the clients automatically connect to. This approach means that users just see a quick loss of connection (i.e. you see the message, “Have you tried turning it off and on again?”) before the client connects to the new server.
We noticed immediately that there was a problem because not all of the clients were reconnecting to the server. The ones that were not reconnecting were timing out during their SSL handshake. They would then cool down for several seconds before trying again. The problem was that the queue of clients trying to connect to the server was never getting shorter so the clients would never reconnect.
To temporarily resolve the problem, we worked quickly to improve the performance of the notification servers so that everyone could get connected again. The long term fix is to increase the handshake timeout on the client side and add a factor of randomness to the client reconnect cool-down. The client side changes will be pushed in the next release.
What did we learn from this? A couple of things. The first is that even though our server load during normal operation is relatively low, we now have enough users to create load problems when everyone tries to connect at the same time. The second is that our great (in house) logging system allowed us to quickly understand the root of the problem and implement a fix.
It’s not everyday that you get to put up a blog post like this. It’s been nearly 2 years since we laid the first brick upon which Infinit began being built. We’ve seen many ups and downs - an emotional and professional roller coaster ride, but today we’re happy to say that we’ve taken a big step in our journey by joining the Spring 2014 class of Techstars New York.
Getting into one of the world’s best startup accelerators was never a goal in itself. It was simply a stepping stone in our journey - one that is hopefully going to help us grow Infinit from a file transfer application in beta on Mac to one of the most useful productivity tools in the creative world.
I’d like to share some of the lessons that helped us arrive at this point in our adventure and that inspired the team at Techstars New York, in hopes of offering some sort of a guide to small teams with big dreams.
When you set out to build a company, it should be because you love something so much that you know you can significantly impact other peoples’ lives for the better. We set out to change the world with a pretty cool technology. While our product has itself changed radically from the outset, thanks to the many people we’ve spoken to and collaborated with, we’ve found ways to marry our technical vision with beauty and design to create a fun and playful tool that we and hundreds of people use every day. Infinit is a reflection of our technological roots, our interpretation of simplicity and our admiration of beautiful design.
Your company takes the form of a product, and it’s easy to get distracted thinking about where you want to go and how things will look in the future. We started out with a big vision and a grand plan. It took time to realize that moving step-by-step and day-by-day was important in establishing a rhythm for our team. We have morning meetings. We talk about what we did yesterday and what we plan on doing today. Our goals are based on weekly and monthly iterations. We have a roadmap that guides us, but anything that’s more than a month away is never considered a priority. Circumstances change and it’s important to simply recognize that. Hell, less than a week ago we were sitting at our office in Paris drinking coffee with the guys at VLC.
You are totally in the dark until you have data. It might feel nice to have ideas and to execute on what you think people will like, but without numbers, you know absolutely nothing. When we launched our first alpha we recognized this and had to adapt quickly. We determined what to track and how to track it. We tried Google Analytics, Mixpanel, Kissmetrics, etc. It didn’t take long until we realized that our product didn’t fit into the traditional analytics service molds. With our in-house system, we can now track, test and experiment more easily and effectively than ever before.
There is nothing more important than your team. At some point you will need to grow. Taking on new hires is daunting and adds a whole new layer of uncertainty to your company. From the outset, we focused on having a strong culture at Infinit that transcends the office. Five of us live in two houses on the same street. We go out to bars as a team and pick on each other like siblings. Of course we argue and fight, but there is an incredible amount of respect between us, and we understand each other’s personal, philosophical and professional limits. Anyone that joins us will also have to feel comfortable with the cultural foundations we’ve constructed. The team at Techstars loved to see how we presented ourselves on our site (www.infinit.io/about) and in our application video.
Getting to this point does take a lot of work. With six hires, two alphas, one French accelerator (Le Camping) and more stories and lessons learned than we can count on our hands and feet, we’ve never felt more confident in our future. And by investing time and effort in us, Techstars thinks so as well.
The file sharing game is changing, and it’s affecting everyone from casual users and freelancers to professionals. We are unfortunate victims, caught in the competitive crossfire of companies that now reign as kings of the cloud and lords of file sharing.
One of the most recent shots was fired by Droplr. In a modest, yet definitive Tumblr post, the company announced the termination of its free service. New and current users must now sign up and pay for a subscription if they wish to use the tool for more than 30 days.
Droplr certainly has its reasons for completely eliminating its free tier. After all, every company needs to make strategic decisions to survive. However, many of you that lean heavily on the app might think that it’s a bit much to fork out the extra $100 per year. In that case, Infinit might be the right solution for you.
You may be thinking that Infinit could eventually go the way of Droplr, completely eliminating its free offer. However, there is a major distinction to be made between the two apps. Droplr is constrained by the cloud. The company absorbs the costs of storing and serving files for free users. Infinit, on the other hand, uses a different technology that connects users directly without relying on the cloud. Because, Infinit doesn’t have to absorb the same costs as Droplr, CloudApp, WeTransfer, YouSendIt or any other cloud service, we will always have a free option.
With a clean, intuitive design, Infinit offers many advantages over Droplr including the absence of file size limits and transfer speeds between 3x and 23x faster than cloud-based services like Droplr. Admittedly, Infinit is still young. A beta version is available on Mac and an alpha version for Windows is set to be released in the coming weeks. Many new features are in the pipeline as well, like direct downloads via email. Give it a try now. You’ll be happy that you did!
We’re happy to announce that Infinit is making another leap forward. Today, the desktop app is officially available in public beta meaning that you can now use Infinit without any restrictions.
To highlight this new release, we wanted to show you exactly what we mean when we say, “Infinit is the fastest file transfer application ever built.” After all, everyone and their moms claim their app’s speed is unparalleled. Let’s put that to the test. The chart below shows the performance of Infinit and 7 of the most widely used applications for sending files. The comparison is done for transferring the same 100MB file over the Internet, at fixed upload and download bandwidths of 3Mb/s.
You can see that Infinit clocked in at 5:29, 2.5 times faster than WeTransfer and just under 2 times faster than second place, Hightail’s YouSendIt service, which clocked in at 10:14. CloudApp and Dropbox performed the most poorly, at transfer times nearly 3 times longer than that of Infinit. Because Infinit is a peer-to-peer application, whereas the others are Cloud-based, uploading and downloading occur concurrently, effectively cutting the total transfer time down by nearly 50%.
Using a peer-to-peer configuration has major advantages that largely transcend physical distances. Below we show the same comparison for a 2GB transfer in a local network (e.g. the same Wifi network).
The most noticeable difference is Infinit’s transfer time of only about 13 minutes, versus the next fastest tool, Hightail’s YouSendIt, which logged more than 3.5 hours. WeTransfer came in at 14 times slower than Infinit, and Dropbox was the slowest again at over 5 hours. The peer-to-peer technology underlying Infinit automatically recognizes the quickest way to connect two people. So if you’re on the same Wifi network as your counterpart, your transfer simply goes as fast as your Wifi connection’s speed. Every other tool still has to sync with the Cloud, meaning that the proximity of a sender and a recipient doesn’t matter at all.
Infinit is already being used by hundreds of creatives around the world. Many of you are sound and video professionals, digital artists in communication and branding or freelancers. Some of you use Infinit to send personal photo albums, videos or songs. As an application designed with productivity and speed at its heart, Infinit just makes sending anything easy.
Thank you to the many of you that helped us test our alpha and private beta versions over the past few months. Your feedback and suggestions have been invaluable, and we’re very excited to continue this adventure with you.
Infinit is available today on OS X Mavericks, the most recent version of Apple’s operating system. Released publicly last week, OS X Mavericks was announced as a free update for anyone currently running OS X Snow Leopard or later versions. Because Mavericks has brought with it many technical improvements and modifications, we encourage everyone using Infinit to update their operating system.
If you’re already running Infinit on Mavericks, you may have noticed that some views in the app did not work correctly or caused crashes. This update will ensure that Infinit now functions properly. Later this week, another update will be made available to improve the performance of the app.
For those of you already running Infinit, you will be directly prompted to upgrade to the new version of Infinit. If you’d like to update, but Infinit is not open on your computer, just relaunch the app and wait a moment to receive the update message.
The past few months have been incredibly productive for the California-based creators of everything slim and sleek. If you follow pretty much any tech media, you’ve probably read the news that Apple released a new operating system, OS X Mavericks, yesterday afternoon. For the first time in Apple’s history, the OS has been made available for free! So, seriously… no more excuses to avoid updates. We’re talking to you Snow Leopard and Lion people ;)
We’re happy to announce that Infinit will work without a hitch on OS X Mavericks. In fact, an update will be available next week that will take care of any discrepancies between OS X Mavericks and OS X Mountain Lion.
In other, perhaps more exciting news, Infinit is almost ready for a debut on Windows. A Windows 7 version will be ready for early November. The Windows 7 Alpha will be a stripped down version of Infinit, with basic sending and receiving functionalities. Don’t fret though! During the final months of this year, we’ll be working on cleaning it up and adding in the missing pieces.
If you or any of your friends are interested in testing out the Alpha, shoot us an email at email@example.com, and we’ll set you up as soon as it’s out!
“… the greater number of a man’s errors come before him disguised under the specious form of necessity; then, after error has been committed in a moment of excitement, of delirium, or of fear, we see that we might have avoided and escaped it.”
- Alexandre Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo
The early parts of this summer have been a whirlwind of optimization, tweaking and upgrading that has left Infinit looking and feeling more like a Ferrari than a Fiat. But that did not come easily. Rare is it that we have an opportunity to take a step back and understand the decisions we are making or those, which we are about to make. It is this reasoning that we have wholly adopted these past several weeks. After all, big leaps require reflection and deliberation.
We’re happy to say that today is the day that Infinit grows up. Our private beta is now open and as new users sign up, we’ll be sending out invitations on a more consistent and express basis. As always, we’ll be testing with some of you, asking for feedback and consistently improving the app’s functionalities. All the while, we’ll be developing some highly awaited new features like an automatic pause/resume feature, a view of your history and transfer confirmation receipts.
In September, we’ll be open for download with both free and paid versions of the file transfer application. However, anyone who downloads Infinit before our open beta launch will benefit from a free version of the unlimited paid file transfer application for life.
Regarding this release, we truly wanted to take the experience to another level, both on a visual plane and that of the functional as well. Some of the improvements you’ll clearly recognize, others are tucked behind icons, notifications and encrypted data streams. Here’s what you can expect this time around:
In order to benefit from these updates, you’ll need to relaunch Infinit and accept the update. It’ll only take a few seconds :)
We’d like to thank all of the people that helped us test this version of Infinit and offer us feedback. In addition, we’d like to shout out to Eric, Geoffrey, Emmanuel, Jeff, Morgan and Cyril for helping us spot some important bugs. We’re also happy to welcome the new members of our community!