Building Your Own Widget Experiences

A guide on how to use the EngagementSDK to build your own Widget experiences.

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What you'll need to know

  1. Creating the EngagementSDK instance
  2. Creating a ContentSession

We provide the WidgetPopupViewController out of the box for a user experience curated by our design team and for a simple integration into your application - but the WidgetPopupViewController doesn't showcase all the ways that Widgets can be used!

Maybe you want to show a list view of past widgets, or maybe have a running poll throughout an event, or maybe...

In this guide you'll learn how to:

  1. Get and display widgets on demand in your layout
  2. Control the lifecycle of the widgets

Get and Display Widgets

There are 3 different methods of getting widgets to show in your hierarchy:

  1. Subscribing to Realtime Widgets being published by the Producer
  2. Get a list or a single Widget that has already been published
  3. Using a compatible JSON representation of a Widget

The Widget is a UIViewController so you will be able to add it to your view hierarchy like any UIViewController.

Subscribing to Realtime Widgets

Using a Content Session you can subscribe to Widgets that are being published by the Producer. Implement the widget(session: didBecomeReady:) method of the ContentSessionDelegate.

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Considerations with the WidgetPopupViewController

The WidgetPopupViewController will override the ContentSession's delegate with itself. Custom Widget experiences are not simultaneously compatible with the same ContentSession.

class SomeClass {
  
  let sdk: EngagementSDK!
  let session: ContentSession!
  
  func someMethod() {
    let sessionConfig = SessionConfiguration(programID: "program-id")
    session = sdk.contentSession(config: sessionConfig)
    session.delegate = self
  }
}

extension SomeClass: ContentSessionDelegate {
	// Called when the Producer publishes a widget
	func widget(_ session: ContentSession, didBecomeReady widget: Widget) {
		// Do something with Widget
  }
}

Get Published Widgets

Using a Content Session you can retrieve a paginated list of Widgets (up to 20 per page) that have already been published using the getPostedWidgets(page: completion:) method. You can pass .first or .next as page.

.first will always return the newest Widgets.
.next will return the next page from the oldest page loaded.

class SomeClass {
  var contentSession: ContentSession!
  
  func someMethod() {
    contentSession.getPostedWidgets(page: .first) { [weak self] result in
      guard let self = self else { return }
      switch result {
        case .success(let widgets):
          // widgets == nil if there are no posted widgets
          // Do something with widgets
        case .failure(let error):
          // Something went wrong
      }
    }
  }
}

Get a Published Widget

As an integrator you have the ability to query our backend for a specific widget to either display it to the user right away or save the widget details for later use (coming soon). In order to retrieve a Widget you will need to know it's id and kind and use the func getWidget(id: String, kind: WidgetKind, completion: @escaping (Result<Widget, Error>) -> Void) function.

class SomeClass {
  
  let sdk: EngagementSDK!
  let session: ContentSession!
  
  func someMethod() {
    sdk = EngagementSDK(config: EngagementSDKConfig(clientID:"<client id>"))
    sdk.getWidget(id: "<widget id>", kind: <widget kind>) {     
 
      result in guard let self = self else { return }
      switch result {
        case .success(let widget):
          // present `Widget` to your user
        case .failure(let error):
          // Something went wrong
      }
  }
}

Instantiate Widget From JSON

If you're interacting with our REST API directly or if you have a stored widget JSON that you wish to display then you will need to instantiate that Widget using the createWidgets(widgetJSONObjects:completion) method in EngagementSDK. This will take your JSON Object and return the Widget to be displayed.

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JSON Object

The JSON Object must be compatible with JSONSerialization.data(jsonObject:options:). You may want to use JSONSerialization.isValidJSONObject(obj:) to verify a valid JSON Object.

class SomeClass {
  var engagement: EngagementSDK!
  let widgetJSONObject: Any // The Widget JSON Object from REST API
  
  func someMethod() {
    engagement.createWidgets(widgetJSONObjects: [widgetJSONObject]) { [weak self] result in
      guard let self = self else { return }
      switch result {
        case .success(let widgets):
          // Do something with widgets
        case .failure(let error):
          // Failed to parse Widgets from JSON Object
      }
    }
  }
}

Using a Content Session you can subscribe to Widgets that are being published by the Producer.

Managing the Widget Lifecycle

The widgets operate under these four states (in order):

  1. Ready
  2. Interactive
  3. Results
  4. Finished

Caveats:

  • Ready state cannot be 'Entered`. A widget starts in the Ready state.
  • Alerts don't use the Results state

You can manage the widget lifecycle by observing the state changes and controlling when the widget will move to the next state.

The lifecycle events are:

  • Widget entering a state - The widget has entered this state
  • Widget can complete a state - The widget has completed all delayed processes (ie. Network Requests and Animations)

To observe the lifecycle events implement the WidgetEvents protocol and set as the delegate to a WidgetViewModel

To make the widget move to the next state call moveToNextState() on a WidgetViewModel

class SomeClass: WidgetEvents {
	func widgetDidEnterState(widget: WidgetViewModel, state: WidgetState){
    switch state {
      case .ready:
      	// This state cannot be `entered` and this will never be called.
      	break
      case .interactive:
      	// Handle entering the interactive state (eg. Begin a timer)
      	// Then maybe move to the next state
      	widget.moveToNextState()
      case .results:
      	// Handle entering the results state
      case .finished:
      	// Handle entering the finished state (eg. Hiding the widget)
    }
  }
  
 	func widgetStateCanComplete(widget: WidgetViewModel, state: WidgetState){
    switch state {
      case .ready:
      	// This state cannot be `completed` and this will never be called.
      	break
      case .interactive:
      	// Handle the interactive state 'completing'
      case .results:
      	// Handle the results state 'completing'
      case .finished:
				// Handle the finished state 'completing'
    }
  }
}

Subscribe to Widget Interactions

Widget interactions are a useful event to show additional UI or to trigger widget state changes. For an example, you may want to move a Quiz widget into the results state immediately after the user has selected an option.

An interaction is defined for each widget as:
Poll: User selects any option
Quiz: User selects any option
Prediction: User selects any option
Prediction Follow Up: n/a
Cheer Meter: User selects any option
Image Slider: User releases the slider knob
Alert: User opens link

class MyViewController: UIViewController {
  
  private let widget: WidgetViewModel
  
  func viewDidLoad() {
    super.viewDidLoad()
    widget.delegate = self
  }
}

extension MyViewController: WidgetViewDelegate {
  func userDidInteract(_ widget: WidgetViewModel) {
    // do something
  }
}