updated 01:05 pm EDT, Wed July 23, 2008
Beta program coming soon
Apple is preparing to offer a beta-testing program for iPhone applications in its App Store, according to an app developer. The beta program will allow developers to distribute beta versions of their iPhone Apps to registered iPhones for testing, according to TechCrunch. Currently, there is no easy way to put apps on an iPhone other than distribution on Apple's iPhone App Store. Developers have to put any fixes out for all to use. "The big problem here is that the only way to install software on an iPhone or iPod touch is with the App Store. There are also no provisions for beta testing," one developer on the Twitterific team said. "The only way to test a fix is to release the changes to tens of thousands of users. It's the developer equivalent of playing Russian roulette."
The new beta program should be active in a few days, with Apple limiting beta tests to 100 testers for each app. Prospective beta testers will be required to give their iPhone serial numbers to the developer, who will pass the list on to Apple. The beta app can then be distributed though the App Store to the flagged phones without going live on the public store site.