A few months ago, I released WP Audio Player and it has it has since received a decent number of downloads, feature requests, and other feedback.

WP Audio Player

In fact, it’s rare that a week goes by where someone doesn’t shoot me an email asking about how to do something with the plugin, how to introduce their own features, and so on.

To that end, I wanted to provide a short update to those of you who are fans of the plugin and who are looking for the next version, but who are wondering about its status.

The Current State of WP Audio Player

In short, the status of maintaining a free plugin that receives a variety of requests is tough especially when the plugin doesn’t provide any consistent form of revenue.

Don’t read me wrong: I released this plugin for free and am happy to do so, but the flip side of this is that I can only work on it when I have the time.

Thankfully, the users are relatively understanding and have great ideas as to what they’d like to see in the player. For those of you who have read my blog, you know that I’m much more concerned with building, lean, targeting solutions that “building the world.”

As such, I take my time when it comes to deliberating on features. After all, I want to make sure that I’m adding value, not bloat.

What’s With The Delay?

Honestly, it boils down to two things:

  • Time
  • Technology

As far as time is concerned, I am working on it. In fact, the next version is going to be more compatible with all desktop browsers (though I may drop support for some older ones – onward and upward, right?), and it’s going to introduce features that I’ve had to really, really deliberate on such as short codes (of which I have my own opinion).

Then, as far as technology is concerned, right now the web is at a state where different browsers support different features. For example, Chrome and others support the `audio` tag and they support including MP3’s in said tag.

Firefox does not.

To that end, all of those variations in use cases have to be handled and have to be handled elegantly. It’s not just enough to provide a fallback – users need a way to easily recognize that if they are opting to include an MP3, then it won’t display in Firefox.

This is just one of a number of issues that I’m working to resolve.

What’s Coming

Of course, that’s just part of it. For those who are interested, I’m planning the following:

  • Improved mobile support for iOS
  • Improved support for IE, Chrome, Firefox, and Opera
  • Shortcodes
  • Support for Multiple Embeds
  • …and more

Keeping You in The Loop

It’s never my intent to build a plugin and then go dark, but the truth of the matter is that it’s sometimes difficult to juggle the day-to-day responsibilities with free plugins.

That said, I greatly appreciate all of the support and welcome any and all feedback – respectful, of course – but I’m genuinely interested in building the best audio player for WordPress blogs possible.

So hang with me. It’s in development and I’ll provide more updates as I have them.