App Store Now Supports Unlisted Apps Discoverable Only With a Direct Link
Apple recently announced that the App Store now supports unlisted apps discoverable only with a direct link, as outlined on its developer website.
Developers with apps that aren't suited for public distribution can submit a request on Apple's website to distribute unlisted apps, which don't appear in any App Store categories, recommendations, charts, search results, or other listings. Unlisted apps can also be accessed through Apple Business Manager and Apple School Manager.
Apple says apps for specific organizations, special events, research studies, or employee sales tools and resources are good candidates for unlisted distribution. Unlisted apps are supported in all countries where the App Store is available.
Developers can submit Apple's request form for both new and existing apps. If approved, the app's distribution method will change to "Unlisted App" and will apply to any future versions of the app. Unlisted apps are available to anyone who has access to the link, and if the app is already available on the App Store, its current link will remain the same.
Unlisted apps must be ready for final distribution, and requests for apps in a beta or pre-release state will be declined, according to Apple. In other words, unlisted distribution cannot be used for TestFlight-like purposes.
The news was brought to our attention by developer Steve Troughton-Smith.