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  • Writer's pictureQuinne Farenwald

Dream, Create, Impact: Navigating the Journey from App Creation to App Store

Updated: Oct 16, 2023

Creating and launching an app on the Apple App Store is a journey that culminates in a profound sense of empowerment and creativity. Through this process, humans can dream, create, and impact millions of lives. Powerful.


Throughout my career, I have uploaded, submitted, and released new versions of existing apps. However, I have joined teams after the inauguration process of the app into the App Store had occurred. With this gap in knowledge identified, I embarked on a personal journey to comprehend every nuance behind the scenes. This article is a record of my exploration, from app creation to App Store submission, revealing the noteworthy steps, resources, and challenges encountered along the way.


To begin, I chose to create a 'Hello World' app, a practice deeply rooted in the tradition of app development. This rudimentary application features a black text label on a white screen, serving as a litmus test to verify that all the fundamental components of an app are functioning as intended.


Noteworthy Steps and Resources

Software versions: macOS Sonoma 14.0 & Xcode 15.0


Apple ID Usage

  • If you do not have an Apple ID, sign up

  • If you already have an Apple ID, make sure you are signed into both your Mac System Preferences and iCloud with the same ID. This will also be the Apple ID you use for your developer account.

App Creation

  • If your do not have Xcode, download newest version of Xcode from App Store

  • In Xcode, create a new 'Project' (during the project creation, I signed into my Apple ID in the 'Team' section) and build the app of your dreams

  • Create a 1024x1024 PNG icon and drag it into Assets 'AppIcon' file

Apple Developer Account Usage (If have an Apple Developer account, skip this section)

  • Download newest version of Apple Developer from App Store

  • In Apple Developer, enroll

  • Wait for approval confirmation email, could take up to 24hrs

App Store Connect Usage

  • Once Apple Developer account is final, log into App Store Connect

  • In App Store Connect, proceed to My Apps, 'Add Apps' and fill out info

  • Your new app will now appear in the Apps page, click into your new app to view the apps App Store home page

  • Fill out all the necessary required app info, see the App Store Required section below

  • Once everything is filled out, submit for review, make sure to confirm and select the second and final submit button

App Store Required

Organized by App Store Connect Tab Titles


Prepare for Submission:

  • Required Screenshots: iPhone 6.5" Display, iPhone 5.5" Display, iPad Pro (6th Gen) 12.9" Display, and iPad Pro (2nd Gen) 12.9" Display (Reference which devices meet these requirements with Image Specifications)

  • Support URL

  • Keywords

  • Description

  • Choose a build - to choose a build, you must upload your app build manually following this YouTube tutorial

  • Contact Information

App Information

  • Content Rights Information

  • Age Rating

  • Primary category

Pricing and Availability

  • Choose a price tier

App Privacy

  • Privacy Policy URL (Reference my Privacy Policy)

  • Provide information about the app’s privacy practices


Challenges

App Icon Troubleshooting

  • Not having an App Icon loaded elicited four slightly different 'Asset validation failed' errors to appear at once when trying to archive my app in the manual upload to App Store Connect from Xcode phase. I assumed I had four separate issues, but all issues were fixed by simply creating a 1024x1024 PNG icon (I used Adobe Illustrator for this icon creation) and dragging it into Assets' 'AppIcon' file.

App Store Required Images

  • I'm a graphic designer, making images is technically no problem. However, with my developer hat on, I want this process to be as fast and effortless as possible, which it is far from. More thoughts on this to come. The online resource I found to be the most helpful was Hotpot.ai, though it is still more effort than I was hoping for. The online resource I found most exciting and closer to what I'm dreaming of is Withfra.me/shot.

App Store Navigation of Required Assets

  • This process took longer than it needed to due to no clear delineation of what items were required. To figure that out, I had to submit the app, then received a red list of all the required items I was missing. Where those items are located in App Store Connect was also a 'Where's Waldo' style hunt. My comprehensive list in App Store Required will save valuable time in the future.

Time

  • I sat down to hopefully accomplish this task in one sitting within a few hours. Know that both the Apple Developer Account Approval and App Store Approval process can take a few days each.


Conclusion

My app was rejected due to a violation of "Guideline 2.2 - Performance - Beta Testing." This violation indicated that my app appeared to be a pre-release or test version. The app was simply too simple. Apple sent this helpful link, App Store Review Guidelines, and guidance for the next steps. "If your app is not ready for public distribution, use TestFlight to test your app." I am excited to learn how to get my app into TestFlight: Learn More. I see it as a huge win that my App Store setup was correct; my app just does not have enough consumer value for it to be considered for the store. Its rightful home is in TestFlight, another process I have experience with but only too, after inauguration.


Creating and launching an app on the Apple App Store is a time-consuming journey, especially for the first time. Starting from scratch, the process took several hours, spread over multiple days. I know that first-time tasks are always more time-consuming, but with each attempt, I grow more efficient and knowledgeable. Thank goodness, for each app, this large setup only happens once.


This journey has prepared me for future projects, and I now approach the process with a more profound understanding. The challenges and rejections, I have come to learn, are not setbacks but opportunities for growth. With a more robust app, I am well on my way to leaving my mark on the App Store.

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