Letting users test your iPhone app

November 20, 2011

OK, your iPhone app is about to be released. You and your teammates think the app is perfect. You just want to ask a couple of friends to test the app. Should you?

Yes you should let others test.

The first weeks are vital in the life cycle of your app. If your users do not understand the app or it crashes on their phone, you will get a lot of one star ratings and sink deep in the ocean of 450,000 iOS apps.

OK, so how do I test. How do I get my beta to my users? iPhone beta distribution used to be a complete pain in the neck. You had to get the UDID of the iPhones of your testers, nicely hidden away. Then create an Ad Hoc Profile, send them the app + profile and pray your testers ¬†would understand what to do with iTunes to install it. My experience: 20 % of installs didnt’ work, in particular updates of the beta app and then on Windows. That was a complete pain. Nowadays you can use Over-the-air (OTA). The distribution platform TestFlightApp helps you nicely with this.

OK, my testers managed to install the app, now what? Well, depending on what you want to test, give instructions. Ask the right questions. Can you run the app? Can you upload a photo? Do you instantly understand how to use it? Does it run on your specific version of the OS? Just sending the app will not get you that valuable results. Go in with a hypothesis, ask yourself and your testers the right questions and validate.

How do you do testing?



Dirk de Kok