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SOLVED: How to Build and Distribute for Real Devices?

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I'm struggling to figure out how I can build my iOS app to run on real devices. I'm able to run on my iPhone when I plug it into my laptop, select it from the list of devices and press play. But I believe that is the debug build. I'd like to build a real release version like it would exist in the App Store and install it on my iPhone as well as my wife and kids. I tried an archive build, but I'm not able to install it on any iPhones. What am I doing wrong?


Number of thing you need

  1. Developer Licence. If you do not want to pay you can "Sideload" to each device but will only last 7 days.
  2. You need to Archive the app. Then go to App Store Connect
  3. You will see you App in "My App"
  4. Then if you want on App Store fill out the required information. (Note then it will go though a full review).
  5. OR if you want to put it on TestFlight (You do not have to fill a lot of the information) and you can then put it on your family phone via TestFlight (this last for 90 days), before the 90 days change the "Build" number and resubmit etc.

See Sean Allen - How to Upload and Distribute Your App | App Store 2021, think most of still valid.


Thanks Nigel, this video is helpful for using Testflight, but I think I'm first looking to use Ad Hoc distribution. I found this page about that and will report back if I can get it to work.


I followed the Ad Hoc distribution instructions above and that worked. I plan on trying the Test Flight process soon so I can send it to people outside my house. Thanks Nigel.


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