Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Distribute your iPhone/iPad adhoc builds Over The Air using Dropbox

Update: I recently found this site called which allows you to distribute the app similar to file-sharing sites, drag and drop ipa file and share the link to the testers.

Yes, there is an awesome service by Testflight App which I highly recommend. Not because I received their stickers for being an early adaptor :). It does so many things which makes distributing app for beta testing a breeze, go try it yourself.

I was just curious to know how OTA works, after testing with own web server for internal testing, I thought why can't I do this with Dropbox?

  • Build your app from xcode using Build and Archive option.
  • Upload your ipa file to Dropbox. And get public link for the ipa.
  • Download the manifest.plist file from and edit the line #14 with the public link of your ipa. Modify other keys as well (bundle-identifier, bundle-version, title)
  • Upload the modified manifest.plist to Dropbox and get its public link.
  • Download index.html from and edit url param at line #8 with public link of your manifest.plist
  • Upload the index.html to Dropbox and share the public link of it with your beta testers.

Upload your ipa
Copying public link

All files, copying public url for index.html 

Installing the app

App icon will be disappeared once the installation complete (which is weird), but restarting the device does solve the issue. You have your app on springboard for testing. Enjoy delivering your adhoc builds to your testers by distributing over the air.

NO iTunes FTW.


  1. Good one!

    If you follow by this way of creating the ipa file will solve the wierd issue.

  2. @suresh kumar

    Thank you for the link, I think it is happening only when you try with dropbox.

    Will revisit this shortly and update.

  3. Nice job! Worked first time for me....

  4. I made all instructions but when tap to link in safari it says: "Cannot connect to"

    1. Getting the same issue on my end too.

    2. you need to enable the public folder for the dropbox and put everything there only.

  5. getting Error cannot connect to

  6. @jignesh

    Not sure why. You can try which is much easier way to distribute app now.

  7. I also get errors, but only since a recently updated to iOS 9.2.1

  8. Still can we use this method? I am not able to do it. After clicking the beta builds, it doesn't show me anything.