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Visual Studio Team Services can now publish apps to the iOS App Store via new extensions

Microsoft’s pitch of Visual Studio being the single developer environment necessary for creating programs and services has just gotten a pretty sizeable incentive with the addition of new extension that iOS app developers will appreciate.

New in Visual Studio today are the additions of an Apple App Store alongside existing Google Play extensions that will give developers of either ecosystem the ability to push iOS and Android applications to their respective stores from the convenience of their Visual Studio environment.

We are happy to announce an Apple App Store extension that allows deploying iOS applications to the Apple App Store via Team Services or Team Foundation Server (2015 Update 3 or later). Along with the Google Play extension, this provides a good story for continuous deployment of iOS and Android mobile applications via Team Services and TFS.

The Apple App Store extension uses Fastlane which is a popular open source tool for mobile developers. The code for the extension is open source and available publicly on GitHub.

The extension provides 2 build/release tasks and a service endpoint to manage your Apple App Store/iTunes Connect credentials. The tasks allow you to:

  • Upload a build for an existing app to TestFlight for beta testing.
  • Upload a build for an existing app along with metadata and screenshots to iTunes Connect.
  • Submit your app for review to the Apple App Store.

While Microsoft is still fighting the uphill battle of convincing developers to create Windows-first app experiences using its Universal Windows Platform, its Visual Studio team has managed to remove another hurdle keeping developers on the fence about Microsoft’s development environment.

For those interested, visit the Visual Studio blog for more information or stop by the GitHub repository for instructions, code and feedback.

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