So no doubt pretty much everyone reading this uses TestFlight for distributing their betas, yes? Well, looks like you might have to rethink that plan.
First up, their FlightPath (née TestFlight Live) analytics disappeared with just a note to participants “so we can focus on other areas of the business”. Well, bad ideas disappear all the time; apparently that turned out to be a bad idea, competing with Flurry. Surprise level: 0.
Second up, they decided to ditch Android completely:
We are refocusing TestFlight on iOS. While we will continue to support app development on iOS, support for Android beta testing on TestFlight will stop by March 21, 2014.
What does this mean?
After 3/21/2014 no user will be able to upload any Android builds to TestFlight.
Whilst of course we thoroughly approve of that strategy, it seems … out of step with market conditions, does it not? Surprise level: high.
Next up, they stopped taking new customers on iOS too:
On 2/19/2014 we announced that only Teams who have previously uploaded a build with the TestFlight SDK will be able to continue to upload builds with the SDK.
What does this mean?
If you are an existing Team that has previously uploaded a build with an SDK attached you will need to upgrade to the latest SDK version by 2/26/2014, afterwards your build will be rejected until it has the correct SDK version.
If your team has never uploaded a build with an SDK or you are a new TestFlight user then you will not be able to incorporate any version of the TestFlight SDK. You will be asked to remove the SDK from your build and re-upload.
OK, now things are getting downright weird. Surprise level: WTF?
Well, the sleuths over at TechCrunch figure they know what’s going on:
Burstly, the makers of an in-app ad management platform called SkyRocket and the parent company of popular mobile app testing platform TestFlight, has been acquired, we’re hearing. Though we’re working to get more information on this now, including deal terms, our understanding is that Apple is the acquirer here.
We’ve been pointed in Apple’s direction by a couple of sources…
Well, on the one hand that’s just about as out of character as Apple acquisitions get, on the other hand, we sure don’t see any other plausible explanation for the increasing oddity of recent events, do you? Hopefully Apple just had a “why didn’t we do exactly this all along?” epiphany and are just bringing the TestFlight we all know and love under their umbrella, but on the off chance that’s not what’s going on here, maybe you all want to sign up for HockeyApp while the signing is good!
All right, this is the first time we’ve updated a post inside the hour: It’s official!
“Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans,” company spokeswoman Kristin Huguet told Re/code.
So yeah, anything you’re relying on TestFlight for right now: figure out a Plan B. Just in case.