After Apple announced TestFlight on the Mac in June at WWDC to the delight of developers and users, the app is now available for macOS Monterey users.
TestFlight allows users to try out test versions of certain apps, and send feedback to developers. It first appeared as an independent app on both iOS and Android in 2010 before it was bought by Apple in 2014, when Android support was unsurprisingly removed.
But for years, developers and users have been wanting to see TestFlight on the Mac, as it was seen as the ideal application to help test other apps that were only available on macOS.
With its release on the Mac App Store (opens in new tab), there’s now greater opportunity for developers to test new features and apps in a much easier way, and to get feedback from potential customers.
Ready for Flight
Developers have seen TestFlight as a perfect method of testing the waters for its apps. Whether it’s a new feature or a completely new app, a user only needs to download TestFlight, follow a link from the developer, and download the test version for their device.
It works by overwriting the existing version of the app on your device if it’s installed, and you can then try out the latest features and send feedback to the developer.
Since the iOS version was released back in 2014, many people were waiting for a macOS version to arrive, so it’s great to see it finally arrive.
With developers clamouring for the same easy method of distributing pre-release apps to the Mac, it’s now a reality in macOS Monterey, where they can send invites to testers and easily approve or decline requests.
Analysis: Better late than never
Before the debut of TestFlight on the Mac, it was a bit of a mess for a developer to give access to a certain group of users to try out early versions of the app.
A link to a pre-release app would be sent through email or social media, with no way of measuring how many had downloaded the app and no way of restricting access once the new version was publicly available.
While it’s strange that it’s taken almost seven years for TestFlight to come to the Mac, it’s better to see it arrive late than not at all. It’s going to allow developers to receive feedback in a much more streamlined way, and can help give them ideas to further improve upon the new features that they’re working on, which will hopefully result in even better Mac apps for us to use in the future.
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