Android chat heads & Instalyrics

2 minute read Published:

I remember those days when I used to struggle for fancy interactive views on the android SDK.

Back in 2015, I was impressed by facebook’s messenger app which can be drawn over screen and had chat bubble heads(and I guess that is how it got termed as chat bubbles). I wanted to make the same for the Instalyrics app. Later down the line that’s what musixmatch did.


Instalyrics had already gathered traction, In the first week we only did WOM(Word-of-mouth) among our friends. Considering my 150 contacts and Siddesh having 150 we still managed to get an

Active userbase of 8000 users at the end of the 8th day from launch"
For which we later received a DMCA for violating rights of an artist by not asking for his permission for displaying the lyrics for a song which is his work. I respect the licensing term and also the pay for what you use thing, but this was a bummer.

We decided to take the app down and opensource it later. Later one day when he used to drop me home on his RE from work, 1337Lab, Krupesh got interested but derived the idea a bit further by karoake and stuff. The app was already maintaining LRC(standard format for time synchronous lyrics) so that would a bit easy and then he also assured the PR work which his wife would help us do. But then I was too vested in my personal life and we missed a big shot.

Musixmatch received investment from facebook, and then I regretted this like anything

Facebook’s library of chat head also had a lot of additional stuff embedded with it. It had configurable physics like spring action for the interactive feel, I never wanted that heavy library but then I realised later, the physics is what was fascinating about the library, the animations and the feedback. With great power comes great responsibilities.

Henry Chuang’s implementation of the chat head libary which was comparatively light and worked like charm was more impressive.

I definitely used that in Instalyrics but it was poorly implemented and definitely fet embarassed for that. Afterall I was so excited and immersed into the idea of availability of the library.

And today chat heads is official and tightly integrated with AndroidSDK. Now that’s great