🚀 Product Update: Single-Page App, Mobile Navigation, & more

Luke Chesser
Sep 19, 2016 · 2 min read

Our September Week 3 product update that we share internally with the Crew team, keeping them up to date on the product changes to Unsplash over the past week.

In our last update we talked about how we’d turned on the single-page versions of the major feeds (Home, New, Collections). We’ve now turned on all of the remaining routes, so Unsplash is now a full single-page app for all of the major pages.

We said it last week, but we’ll say it again: Unsplash is fast. Really. F***ing fast.

Specifically, Naoufal Kadhom and Kirill Zakharov finished up placeholders and routing for the user profile and collection pages.

Even after last week’s results, we were still amazed at the overall speed of the app, now that we’ve removed full-page transitions.

I’d bet that Unsplash is now one of the fastest non-trivial apps in the world, giving us another bonus ✅ to our API + React transition.

We’re not the only ones who think it’s fast.

Kirill updated the navigation on mobile, moving it to the top of the screen, among other things.

While we would have loved to keep the navigation near the bottom for easy access, iOS treats fixed bottom navigations weirdly, resulting in some odd behaviours, especially with our disappearing-on-scroll nav.

We initially had turned the routing for the single-page app off on mobile, since we weren’t sure that most phones could handle the rendering without feeling sluggish, but after we experimented a bit, we turned it back on and it’s lightning fast ⚡️


  • Work continued on the backend for following feeds: Aaron Klaassen worked on pushing existing activities to Stream and I worked on adding following/follower relationships to users
  • Aaron updated the random photo endpoint to support arrays of random photos, helping ease the load on Source, specifically with Invision’s recent updates to Craft
  • Overall, we’ve also been focused on a lot of hiring related things, with each team member (Rails, React, Design, and Community) looking to add a clone over the next few months
  • Oh yeah, and Nas curated. Wut.

TTU: 4.92M minutes (+15.8% over the same week a month ago)

Unsplash Blog

Behind the scenes building the open photography movement at Unsplash.

Luke Chesser

Written by

Cofounder of @unsplash, building the internet’s visual library 🇨🇦 They used to let me code 🤷‍♂️

Unsplash Blog

Behind the scenes building the open photography movement at Unsplash.