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F.A.Q. [Sticky] Development workflow - from beta to app store release

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Dev Statistics

With the release of EasyVFR 4 in the appstores we are now facing a new stage. Therefore it's nice to share a short recap on the first 23 months of public beta testing. In the first month, we started beta testing EasyVFR 4 with a select group of beta testers. This group became bigger and bigger and every input was written down as a to-do. In the end this resulted in 631 checked off challenges covered by 54 public beta releases. This means 1 release per 2 weeks with an average of 12 new and improved features per beta release!


Right now the focus of optimizing stability and performance is shifted more towards making the software, even more, user friendly, enhancing existing functionalities and adding whole new features. Of course, we do not forget stability and performance, so we are always working on optimizing the software with every new version as you got used from us.


New beta workflow

Your input is of the utmost importance. Development is a continuous process and therefore we would like to keep you on board as a beta tester. For this we tried to keep the beta workflow you and I got used with during the first development stage as it was, but a few adjustments needed to be made.

On your device within 'My EasyVFR' you can check the box 'Participate as beta tester' which will make you a beta tester for the software on that particular device. You then will get a message when a new beta version is available. The new versions will also still be available on our forum page.


The way we would like to receive your feedback will also change a bit. The feedback can be placed on the forum sorted by the beta version. By doing this, there will not be one big feedback place for all versions together anymore, but a more focused one on the version your feedback is about. Of course the rest of the forum can be used for general discussions, support questions and your suggestions. We also will keep using the 'Vote' on Wishlist items system at the forum.


Development workflow

So about this new stage, how will this development process look like? For this we created a development process that consists out of three cycles for future releases.

  • Internal beta
    This first stage is about bug fixing and testing new functionalities internally.
  • Public beta
    This second stage is when you come into play when the public beta is released. For each version, we will mention on the forum what the points of attention/new features are.
  • App stores release
    With your input regarding the public beta versions, the third stage will be reached when the new version is promoted into the app stores for all platforms.


How to update from beta to app store release (and back)

  • The future beta-to-release flow is not carved in stone yet, but for the moment the workflow will be that we release versionnumbers initially via testflight (for example 4.0.871 will be released as betatest version, aka via testflight on iOS and this forum monday or tuesday), and when we feel the last betaversion done is good for public usage we offer exactly the same version for the appstores. 
  • So for example upcoming weeks versions 4.0.870,871 and 872 will be delivered as testversions, and when 872 turns out ok we deliver that to all our other users as "official" version too. 
  • So in essence a betatester doesn't have to install the appstore versions, there are no futures (yet) that only work with appstore versions (notifications is the only thing I can think of at the moment).
  • *BUT* We would appreciate betatesters at least once install from the appstores, so they are allowed to rate us 5 stars and write a nice review every now and then ;-). After that the can keep using betaversions if the want.
  • Betatest and appstore versions are mutually exclusive; they overwrite the other, but settings will be preserved normally. So there are not two "apps" on your device, just one, which can be either the appstore or the testflight version.
  • Normally a "downgrade" in version numbers is only possible by uninstalling the existing app (on Android I am sure about that, iOS I don't know, Windows and Mac allow simply reinstalling older versions over newer versions without a problem I believe). Such an uninstall will lose the settings and must then be reapplied later on the newly installed version indeed.

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