Frequently Asked Questions

If you’ve got a question or issue, chances are someone else has already thought of it.

Q: This is my first time logging in since the April release. How do I reclaim my old Flote account?

So it’s your first time back since the update and you want to reclaim your old account. You’ll need to know the email address you used to create it then do the following steps:

1) Direct your web browser to https://flote.app
2) When you see the landing screen, click “Sign In” at the top
3) In the login panel, click the text that says “Forgot Password”
4) Enter the email address you originally signed up to Flote with

If the email is correct, you’ll get a password recovery link which will let you sent a new password then you’re good.

If something doesn’t work:

• Are you using the android app? Delete it and use a web browser.

• Do you not see the updated page and the round Flote wave logo? Clear your browser cache.

• Is a password manager putting in your username rather than email address? Replace the user name with your email address.

• Do you not get the email or not remember the proper email address? Send a request to our support form at flote.biz/support/ and we’ll contact you to help you authenticate your account and restore access. (Or read the next item in the FAQ for more details)

Q: I can't get into my Flote account because I can't access my old email account.

In order to protect all user accounts, those of you who can’t access your Flote accounts because you forgot your email, entered it incorrectly or lost access to it somehow will need to validate your accounts with us directly.

If you are experiencing this issue, please submit a request in the form below and you’ll be contacted directly to get your account restored.

Q: I've tried restoring my account but it won't accept my username. How do I log in?

Our new security model does not use your old username to access your account. Some password managers will auto-fill this field with your username… please clear it and enter the email address you used to originally create the account.

Q: I can't get the Flote App / APK to work on my Android Phone. Is the app still a thing?

We are sorry to report that as of May 1, 2022, the Flote Android app is now defunct.

Please remove it from your phone and follow this link to see how to add a Flote icon to your home screen for easy access to the web app.

In the future we will be developing a Progressive Web Application (PWA) which will have all the capabilities an app and APK would have. Please stay tuned for that update later in the year.

Q: Why is the site called "flote.app" if there's no app?

When we initially registered the Flote domain, we wanted the .com but someone had already registered it. We have reached out to them to attempt to acquire it but so far they have not responded.

If it helps, you can think of Flote as a “web application”… and soon we will release a Progressive Web Application (PWA) that works on your phone just like a native app would… combining the ease of access and local services that an app would have with the ease of update and greater uncensorability that a web page based app offers.

Q: Why do videos or live streams sometimes pause or show a "loading" animation?

Unlike YouTube and the other big players, Flote currently does not have the resources to offer video transcoding… re-sizing of videos as they’re being played to account for changes in the viewer’s network and bandwidth conditions.

This means that whatever the uploader or live streamer sends us is what you’re getting.

In the near future we may start transcoding uploaded videos to make sure they are of a reasonable size and eventually we hope to get to the point where we can do this in real time for streams.

For now, though, we encourage live streamers and video posters to consider the bandwidth of viewers when producing your content. 30fps at 2500mbps is sufficient for most content and will help viewers have a more enjoyable and consistent experience.

Q: I'm trying to post an upload but it says I've exceeded a limit. What are the limits?

In order to prevent spam, flooding and wasted storage space, Flote has implemented post upload limits on a weekly basis.

It’s our intention that no normal user should ever notice these limits but in the event you do encounter one, please either reduce the size of your content… for example 1200px x 1200px at 72dpi is more than adequate for on-screen viewing.

Here are the current file limits:

Weekly Limit:
10 GB cumulative maximum across all attached files across all posts.

File Types:

JPEG or PNG
File size <= 10 MB

GIFs
Frame count <= 350 frames
Pixel count <= 300 million pixels (width * height * frame_count)
File size <= 15 MB

Video (we do not transcode)
Container: mp4
Codec: H.264
File Size <= 3 GB

Audio
File Types: MP3
File Size <= 500MB

Posts:

Images (JPG, PNG, GIF)
20 image files
25 MB
Media (MP3, MP4)
5 media files
6 GB

Text
65,000 characters (free)
200,000 characters (paid, coming soon)

Replies & Comments: (only 1 attachment allowed per reply/comment)

Images (JPG, PNG, GIF)
1 image file
10 MB

Media (MP3, MP4)
1 media file
3 GB

Text
9,000 characters (free)
200,000 characters (paid, coming soon)

Q: Is there a way to verify my account "blue checkmark" style?

Flote does not currently have a mechanism for doing Know Your Customer (KYC) style validation for user accounts.

Our House Rules stipulate that username squatting is not tolerated so if you’re trying to join Flote or already have an account and someone else is pretending to be you, let us know and we will address it.

Having said this, we are very much interested in meaningful ways to allow people to self-identify. Some possibilities include visibly unique avatars generated by public and private keypairs, use of federated identity servers, web-of-trust type peer validation and others. We’ll be exploring these options in the future.

Q: Why do my mobile portrait photos appear sideways?

This is a known issue with portrait mode photos taken by mobile devices.

What’s happening is that despite your phone being rotated vertically into portrait mode, the sensor still captures the photo as though it was in landscape mode and identifies the file’s width and height as though it was shot horizontally.

There is some process by which the mobile OS’ Photos app figures this out and rotates the image when it’s displaying for you, but other systems either don’t know about or don’t capture that info and so just use the photo’s stated orientation.

We’ve captured this issue already and it’s being prioritized for work.

For now, though, there are two possible work-arounds: 1) shoot in landscape or 2) use an external app to rotate and re-save the image in portrait mode after shooting in portrait.

Q: I have tried blocking a user but they are still able to see me. How can I block them?

Blocking is an important part of the Flote experience and we take failures of this feature very seriously.

If you have blocked a user but they are still able to see you, please confirm that you were not following them at the time you chose to block them. If so, please unblock them, then unfollow them, then block them again and confirm it is working.

If not, please submit a support request in the form below and we will give it our immediate attention.

Q: I bought a Plank Owner NFT but don't know how to find it. Where can I see it?

First off, thank you for that. We appreciate your support.

As for finding and viewing your NFT, our crypto team has prepared some “How To” posts to help you get started:

 

Step 1: Get the MetaMask Wallet – the MetaMask wallet is where your NFT will be held. It will also contain your $FLOTE tokens and can be used with other crypto as well.

How To: Download and Install MetaMask

Step 2: Set up the Polygon RPC – Sounds complicated but basically it just lets MetaMask see items on the Polygon network which is where the Plank Owner NFTs and $FLOTE tokens are transacted.

How To: Load the Polygon RPC Into Your Wallet

Step 3: Set Up an OpenSea Account – OpenSea is a site for buying and selling NFTs and it will let you see your Plank Owner NFT and also check the market value in the event you wish to sell it.

How To: OpenSea Account Setup

 

Once you’ve done this, you should be able to see your NFT. Of course, if these guides aren’t enough or you just need a helping hand, we’ll gladly jump in… please send a support request using the form below and we’ll get back to you.

Q: Why did Flote launch a new version with fewer features than the old version?

Let us start with an apology. We understand that you expect an upgrade to be better than the previous version and realize that, because we removed a number of features and delivered with some buggy and unfinished parts, that this upgrade does not seem to be better than the previous version.

Our “beta” version of Flote was really more of an alpha version… built quickly by a very small but highly focused team and feature rich for what it was, but not at all stable, secure or scalable. By the time we decided to rebuild the entire system from scratch, it had already exceeded its life span and was slow, unpredictable and crashed often… sometimes for many hours or even days at a time.

So we started from scratch and rebuilt it. Most of it, that is. Time and resource constraints plus pressure to launch and retire the old system (which we were continuing to maintain and fix) put us in a position where we had to cut features. Tough choices were made and some things just got left out. Perhaps we should have done more testing, focused more on the mobile experience, or even prioritized our content creators needs over things like Dark Mode. There are many things we could have done.

What we did, though, is build and deliver an advanced infratructure which is secure, stable and scalable… a foundation upon which we can build well into the future and an environment in which fixes and new features can be deployed much faster and more easily than we ever could on the old platform.

We hope you understand the trade-offs we made. We appreciate your patience and are working hard to restore those lost features and capabilities in new and improved ways. We want just as much as you do for Flote to be a full featured, reliable and easy to use service and we look forward to getting to the point where you are, dare I say it, delighted by your Flote experience.

We’ve got a way to go but we will get there.

Q: Why do I need to fill out a support form? Can't I just talk to your developers?

Collecting and addressing bug reports is more complicated than it may first seem.

To begin with, at least half of reported bugs are issues that can be addressed immediately with the user or are mis-reported, duplicates of existing reports, missing information needed to predictably replicate or just plain user error (yes, it is a thing).

Having developers spend their time verifying, filtering, de-duplicating and gathering information from often frustrated and sometimes even angry users is not the most valuable application of anyone’s time… which is why we have a different team and a special process dedicated just to that task.

A good tech support specialist can listen to a non-technical person’s description of a problem, help isolate and identify the issue, work with the user to resolve it if possible and, if necessary, collect the information required to create a well defined task for developers that is verified and ready to be prioritized for work… while absorbing the frustration that comes with an unhappy experience and turning it into positive energy directed at a desirable outcome.

So please help us help you by working with our support team. Thanks!

What’s happening with the Flote Wallet?
Our original Flote site featured a custodial Bitcoin wallet that came with each account. At the time the site was first created, this made perfect sense as there were few options for people wanting to get started with cryptocurrency.

Since then, however, BTC gas fees have gone through the roof and a wide variety of user friendly non-custodial wallets have appeared on the scene so when we decided to upgrade the system, we also decided to do away with the custodial BTC wallets.

If you have BTC balances in your old wallet, we’re already in contact with you about getting those balances into another wallet. You can also email alex@flote.app to follow up on this.

As for the new wallet feature, it’s been redesigned to allow the connection of your MetaMask wallet… which will, in the coming months, be able to contain Flote tokens which you’ll be able to use for on-site transactions.

We’ll publish a blog post soon about the forthcoming wallet features.

What's the difference between a Native App, a Web App and a PWA?

This topic can be confusing for people because the word “app” is used to mean several different things. In fact, there are five separate things to consider here: 

1) Native App
2) Hybrid App
3) Web App
4) PWA
5) Desktop Shortcut (with or without browser chrome)

To clarify, “browser chrome” is the browser navigation controls, not the “Chrome” browser.

Our APK was a “hybrid app” where static content, icons and other rarely changing elements were contained in the app but the dynamic content is pulled from the web. Most social media “apps” work this way.

By contrast, your phone’s calculator is a “native app” since most if not all of the contents and work it performs are being done on the phone. Other apps that do their work on the phone, even if they draw data from online sources, are usually considered “native apps”.

Our current platform is a “web app”. This basically means any service that has display and interaction elements handled by a web browser, data handled by a server and the workload split between front and back end. Doesn’t matter if it’s on a phone, tablet or desktop.

A PWA is a special kind of web app that’s coded to utilize mobile device hardware capabilities the way a native app would. We do not have this yet.

A desktop shortcut is just that… a shortcut to a website placed on the desktop. Chrome for Android has a relatively unique ability to do this without displaying the browser’s window elements and controls (known as chrome) such as the URL bar. Other browsers used to do this and some are re-introducing it, but it’s strictly a matter of the browser giving you the web app in full-screen mode (or “kiosk mode” they used to call it). Nothing special required from the web app.

For comparison, Safari for iOS can also do a desktop shortcut, but it does not remove the browser chrome. It’s still a web app, just in a browser with chrome and accessed directly from a desktop shortcut.

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