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How to Build an App: TestFlight – Testing Apps by Users

  I added a new category called ‘how to build an app‘ and this is a great post for it. It’s certainly not the very first step in how to make an app, but it’s important.

TestFlight is a great, free service that allows you to send builds to testers for use on their device. It greatly simplifies the process both in time and technicality. I’ve spent hours with some clients explaining how to install a build (which changes as you can see from that post). It can be cumbersome and flaky at best.

I don’t want to duplicate the TestFlight documentation, but here’s a few of the features that they offer that make things easy and simply for both sides…

Upload builds – dragging an ipa file onto the website is about the hardest part. Granted you need to invite testers (which includes them creating an account etc., but it’s similarly simple: they get an email, click on a link, etc.).

View Crash Reports – I’m not saying your iOS apps crash, but I’ve heard some do. If so, you can view users’ crash reports on the site. I don’t need to tell you how helpful it is to see the symbolicated crash report from a user. And to do it w/o having to walk them thru finding the crash reports, etc.

General Easification – Not a word, but it should be. The point is – TestFlight is great and ‘it just works.’ From including links to setup a device or install a build to explaining how to upload your .dSYM – they clearly are developers and think like it. You can even put in checkpoints to view what your users are doing.

I have no business relationship w/ TestFlight – I use it and love it. Check out the TestFlight SDK documentation and see how quickly you can get started.