It’s been about three years since I launched a new iOS app on the iTunes App Store. It was typically a frustrating process with little reward. Perhaps I’m still feeling burned from the failure of BOT. It’s not enough to just try again. I have to figure out what went wrong and then improve. Today, Apple announced a way to fix one of the major problems with iOS app development – TESTING. With TestFlight, now I can easily invite up to 1000 testers to try a new game.
I’ve been looking at the new Android phones and a lot of them do not have keyboards. I don’t know why the industry is still playing “me too” with iPhone-like interfaces. But as an app developer, I have to be aware of this issue. Considering that keyboard-less android phones have few buttons, the menu button becomes more important. That meant I had to get past a developer hurdle – learning how to add menus to my android apps.
When I would publish my Android Apps, the Google Developer Console would give me an unusual error. “The apk is not zipaligned. Please run the…” Blah, blah, blah… what’s Google complaining about now? Typically, I would just ignore this warning. Why should I care? Google didn’t prevent my app from being published, so I would just let it go. But recently, I decided to give this another look. How do I zipalign my apps? I went digging through the Android Developer documents and I was finally able to publish my apps properly. Although, as usual, it was a bit of a struggle. That’s because I hadn’t updated my Android software in a while. It seems that some things have changed in Android land.
Despite the grumpy feelings, I decided to give iPhone development another go. So far, I’m pleased that I did. While converting my Photics Forums app to the iPhone / iPod Touch, I learned some new tricks. For the longest time, I was struggling with getting my iPhone apps to match my Android apps. I was having problems with Reachability and Landscape mode. With the completion of my new app, that’s no longer an issue. While waiting for my app to be approved, I have some time for reflection on my progress.
Ahh… my article starts out with a hedge… a single word that could negate the value of this tutorial… theory! Apple has built a walled garden. It is their happy little nirvana, filled with thousands of apps and billions of downloads. Your apps are invited to this party, if you can get past the checklist. If you have an online app, there is one pesky requirement that could instantly thwart your dreams – reachability. Your app needs to test for Internet connectivity. If it doesn’t, it risks rejection!