HanDBase for iOS 7

HanDBase is what I use for keeping a log of the beers I’ve had, as well as other things in my life I want to keep track of. To reiterate, HanDBase is a true relational database for mobile devices. There’s definitely a learning curve to the app, but once you get a grip on its workings, the results can be very rewarding.

I’ve been beta testing HanDBase 4.9 for iOS 7 (and iOS 6), since iOS 7 Beta 6. The work that Dave Haupert, the developer, has done on the app is tremendous. Although HanDBase always had a learning curve, the biggest complaints I’d heard seem to be more about its aesthetics. I now consider this a moot point; HanDBase will fit in perfectly among the best iOS 7 apps. Much as iOS 7 will make your device feel like a new device, HanDBase for iOS 7 feels like a completely new app, while functionality being largely the same as long-time users depend on. Even the app icon has been updated to fit perfectly with the new stock iOS 7 icons. I could never warm up to the previous icon, being kept in a folder on my home screen, but HanDBase now sits on its own in a coveted spot of my home screen.

There are now Light and Dark themes. They both fit perfectly in the iOS 7 aesthetic. The Dark theme is what I use. I find that all of my forms, the graphical representations for the records, look better; before iOS 7, HanDBase had a largely black theme, at least in how I ran it. In fact, I think the Dark theme fits an app like this. It’s a database, after all. Everything down to the buttons are now iOS 7 text buttons. And managing its image library (huge in my case) has now been updated to be more Photos app-like, changed from the unwieldy coverflow style. Functionality is relatively simple right now, but it’s being worked in. This update to photo management makes a huge difference for me. Also huge is the search functionality. All the search options are now combined into a “super search”, where you can search all fields at once, or any one particular field, selectable from a gear icon in the search field. Last, but definitely not least, of some much appreciated new functionality is long text scrolling to a second line in the record indexes. This makes for much improved readability on a screen such as an iPhone’s.

I now consider HanDBase to be a model citizen in iOS 7, and if aesthetics were the main thing previously holding you back, it’s totally worth revisiting. I can’t recommend it highly enough. Plus, 4.9 is a free update. Although I definitely would have paid for this update, I think this was a really nice way to go. 5.0 should be a big update and I hope a paid one.

HanDBase 4.9 was submitted to the App Store but waiting for approval is now live in the App Store. Full release notes here. Screenshots below are from an iPhone 4S.


Choose DB screen Record list Record

Race database Race record

Bands I've Seen database Bands record

Standard record format


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