Sunday, February 1, 2015

Testflight Beta Testing inside iTunes Connect

Following is step by step guide to use iTunesConnect for build pre-release / beta testing process.

1. Enabling prerelease testing

To start with this make sure you have your app created through itunes Connect account, if you don't have, create one. Once you are done with creating, do this

Go to iTunes connect > My App > Prerelease Tab
Under Prerelease tab there are three tabs Builds, Internal testers & External testers. Select Builds tab.
This will list down all application available, select your app, on right side there is a switch with title “TestFlight Beta Testing”, turn it on.

Note : If no builds are uploaded previously you won't see any switch to turn on beta testing. To upload build follow steps from 2.

2. Creating ipa

Requirement : App Store Distribution profile containing the beta entitlement to distribute builds via TestFlight.

If you are using profile generated after September 2014 it already contains beta entitlement required to enable beta testing feature. Just open Profile in Text Edit and see if there if flag with name beta-reports-active with value true. 

If you are using older profile, regenerate it, regenerated profile will by default include this flag with value true.

NOTE : Using improper profile will result in status stuck at "Processing" under prerelease tab of itunes connect ( after uploading your app to iTunes Connect for beta testing ).

Nothing other special needed while creating .ipa, use standard archive process with proper certificate & profile. Use different build or version number for every .ipa, you can't upload .ipa with same version & build number.

3. Uploading

Requirement : Need iTunes connect account credential for upload. ( Account type Technical / Admin will work ) 

Software for uploading :  
    Xcode - Use submit option from organizer  (  Only applicable if application build from that Xcode ).
    Application Loader - For ipa saved using xcode export option  ( This is tool by apple for uploading )

4. Where to see list of builds / manage tester

Go to iTunes connect > My App > Prerelease Tab > Select your app ( This is equivalent to Testflght site )

5. Manage testers

    Internal testers ( part of your itunes connect program ) 

    ( 25 tester allowed, each can install on upto 10 devices )

  • To be eligible to become an internal tester, a user must be part of your iTunes Connect team with the Admin, Legal, or Technical role. So add people to your itunes connect team to whom you want to make internal tester.

      Inviting internal tester :
  • Go to iTunes connect > My App > Prerelease Tab > Select your app
  • In “Internal Testers” tab there is option “Invite Testers”, this will list down all members of iTunes Connect team, check those whom you want to invite.

    External testers ( not part of itunes connect program ) 

    ( This option is not suitable most of the times, as app goes through review process which is time consuming )

  • No need to add these tester on iTunes Connect team, just need their email id to invite them.
  • App need to go through Beta review process of apple which is similar to regular app review process.

      Inviting external tester :
  • Go to iTunes connect > My App > Prerelease Tab > Select your app > Select external tab
  • Add email ids of people to whom you want to invite as external testers
  • You can also export testflight teammates as external tester, to do this follow these steps
     Exporting :
  1. On testflight site Navigate to the "People" tab
  2. Check mark the teammates you would like to export
  3. Open the "Actions" menu on the right side of the teammates list
  4. Select "Export Contact Info" to download the exported CSV file
  1. Go to iTunes connect > My App > Prerelease Tab > Select your app > Select External Testers tab
  2. Click the plus sign to add new external testers
  3. Use the "Import File" from the "Add New External Testers" page to upload the exported CSV file

6. Installing apps on devices

Testers will receive mail with link, which will redirect to test flight app for installing application.

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