Important: This document has been replaced by App Distribution Guide. App Distribution Guide offers step-by-step instructions for configuring, testing, and submitting your app for approval. This new document describes how to use Xcode and other Apple developer tools to create and configure your project, request signing certificates, create provisioning profiles, configure special App Store technologies, test your app on devices, create your app record in iTunes Connect, and submit your app for approval to Apple. If you have a company Apple Developer Program membership, you’ll also learn how to manage your team’s certificates and provisioning assets.
Distributing an App
If your development team is enrolled in the Standard Program, you can distribute your app in two ways. You can submit an app to the App Store or you can use ad hoc distribution to install the app on up to 100 devices for testing purposes.
Development teams enrolled in the Enterprise Program can also use in-house distribution.
Development teams enrolled in the University Program do not have the ability to distribute apps.
Publish Your App to the App Store
To distribute your app through the App Store, you need to:
Download your team’s distribution provisioning profile from the iOS Provisioning Portal.
Create an iTunes Connect account.
When you register for iTunes Connect, make sure to use the same user name and password used for your iOS Developer Program account.
Prepare your app for submission, see Submitting Your Application for Publication on the App Store.
Ad Hoc Distribution Authorizes a Limited Set of Devices to Run Your App
iOS developers enrolled in the Standard Program can also distribute an app outside of the App Store on up to 100 different devices for testing purposes only. To use ad hoc distribution, create an archive of your app, or have a teammate send you an iOS App Store Package (
.ipa) of the archived app.
You distribute your app by providing the
.ipa file for users to install on their devices. Because you select a valid ad hoc provisioning profile to archive the app, users don’t need to install the profile on their device, only the .
ipa file. Users can use iTunes to install the app on their devices. If users want to use Xcode to install the app on their device, share the archive as an
.xcarchive file package.
In-House Distribution Allows Companies to Distribute Apps Internally
iOS developers enrolled in the Enterprise Program can distribute in-house without identifying individual devices or using the App Store. To distribute your app in-house, create an archive of your app, or have a teammate send you an archived app. Distribute your internal app using your company’s authorized software distribution mechanism. Because the app file can be installed on any iOS device, make sure you protect the distribution of this file. Members of your company can use iTunes, iPhone Configuration Utility, or Xcode to install the app on their devices.