Day 113 — Publishing our App
Today I pushed our app update to the Apple and Google app stores
This Week: Sprint 16
My focus this week is on getting ready for our public app launch. Here are some of the activities I’ll be doing:
- Reaching out to advocacy groups.
- Getting feedback on the app.
- Getting permission to use videos.
- Making app tweaks.
- Testing out Tik Tok marketing.
Today’s Work: Publishing the App
Over the weekend, we merged the latest updates to our app. So that we have some time to identify new issues, today I published the latest version to Apple and Google Play stores.
Here’s how it works.
1— Releasing to Apple
Step 1 — Building the IPA
Using Expo, it’s pretty easy to build app files. For Apple, that first means creating an .ipa file.
Step 2 — Uploading the App via Transporter
Once the .ipa file is created, I download the file and open the Transporter app on my computer. Transporter does exactly like the name describes…it “transports” the app bundle to the Apple App store.
Step 3 — Configuring the App in Test Flight
Once Transporter has done its job, it takes a bit of time for the app to appear in the Apple Store (I wasn’t counting, but generally I set it down for about 10–30 minutes and come back to it later). I’ve found the App store to be pretty clunky, so it took some getting used to. The first thing it asks you is to add “compliance” information — basically that you use standard encryption on the app.
Step 4 — Pushing the Update
Then comes the next confusing part of the UX: the app won’t be reviewed until you actually add testers to the build.
Apple used to have a 24 hour waiting period for these beta apps, but for the past 6 months or so approval has been automatic.
Step 5 — Install the Update
Now comes the best part: installing the latest update. Beta apps on iOS are managed through an app called, “Test Flight”.
2— Releasing to Android
The process for Android is very similar, only the app is uploaded to the Google Play Console and the beta app download is a bit easier since it doesn’t require a separate app.
Step 1 — Building the APK
This is exactly like iOS, only a slightly different command.
Step 2 — Uploading the App
Uploading the app for Android is a bit easier and can all be done through the command line. In this case:
Step 3 — Configuring the App in Google Play
Step 4 — Pushing the Update
Once that’s done, it’s time to push the update. I configure it for “open testing” so that anyone with the link or who searches Invincible can access it from the app store.
Step 5 — Wait for Review
Unliked Apple, Google still requires review of Beta apps.
Luckily, it only took a few hours. I did find it takes a few more for the updated app to appear on the app store.
Step 6—Installing the Update
Unlike Apple, Google allows you to publish Beta apps to the Play Store. By selecting the “Open Testing” option, our app is searchable in the app store.
Want to give us some feedback?
Check out the app at invincibleapp.com/beta.