Apple has upgraded its TestFlight app, which helps developers test beta versions of their apps. Developers using TestFlight can now invite up to 1,000 outside beta testers to give their apps a try, up from the previous 100 invitations allowed in the old version.
For developers to take advantage of the new features, they will need to install an iTunes Connect record for the app, upload the beta version from Xcode, and enter the email address of the chosen beta testers. Apple does need to pre-approve beta versions, just like it does release-ready apps, and will need to repeat the process for significant future updates too.
Additionally, the amount of technical knowledge required on the part of the beta tester has been reduced. Developers simply use iTunes Connect to send an email to potential beta testers, who’re then directed to the TestFlight app inside the App Store. Once installed on their device, they can provide timely feedback, and are automatically alerted of future updates. There’s no longer any need to request a device’s UDID, or to install provisioning profiles.
The added time it’ll take for apps to be approved for admission into TestFlight will likely be offset by more valuable feedback from a wider group of beta testers. The upgrade to TestFlight comes several months after Apple acquired Burstly, the team behind both the TestFlight app and the mobile analytical tool FlightPath.