Mobile app developers call for ‘Beta App Store’

For mobile app developers, getting apps into the Apple marketplace before Christmas is key. Every holiday season, sales of tablets and smartphones increase dramatically and app developers rush to deploy new games and apps in time for the festive rush. If your app is available for people to download on Christmas morning, you can take advantage of the huge spike in usage and content consumption via these new devices. But making sure your app is available in time for Christmas holidays is not always easy.

This Saturday 21st December the App Store will close down for a holiday. This means that less organised mobile app developers scramble to deploy largely untested and unfinished apps into the marketplace in time to take advantage of the boom. Developers are now calling for a solution that enables them to deploy, test and distribute apps before they become fully available on the App Store.

Apple’s current solution, enables mobile app developers to deploy test builds to 100 devices. However many developers feel this is not enough to conduct thorough testing. In addition those 100 unique devices are set in stone for a year which provides little flexibility. Currently, there are two main ways to test an app before deployment to the App Store.

One solution is to use a platform called ‘test-flight’, the other a service called ‘HockeyApp’. However these systems have their drawbacks in terms of bypassing security and installing provisioned test apps which ultimately Apple doesn’t want developers to do.

In today’s technology press some developers are calling for Apple to release a ‘Beta App Store’ as an alternative to the traditional Apple App Store. This would enable trusted mobile app developers to deploy apps to an intermediary marketplace enabling them to be tested thoroughly and to appropriate scale. This would be a great thing for consumers as the quality of apps available would improve through rigorous testing protocol in the right environment.

Apple is always looking to raise the bar and the time is right to fix the problem of developers rushing out under-developed apps to hit the Christmas rush.


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