How can I test my ex-android app on someone else's iphone?

I created an android app in AI2, with the sole aim of encouraging people to donate to a specific charity.

Unfortunately, it seems that most of the people who would be interested/willing to donate use I-Phones.
So, I have uploaded the app to thunkable in the hope of extending its reach.

With the android version I was able to send the apk file to designated testers. I have tried to find out how to do this for apple devices but either instructions to do this don’t exist, or I’m failing to understand them (I’m 80 years old and therefore maybe insufficiently tech-savvy!).

If anyone can offer guidance, could you, please, make it step-by-step so I can cope with it?

Hey @themcewens03c, welcome to the Thunkable Community! :wave:

Curious to know how you figured this out? Do you have any research you can share, either here or via PM?

I’m not sure how you managed to do this. That Android-only .aia files that you download from AI2 are not compatible with Thunkable X because we use a completely different system in order to provide simultaneous support for Android, iOS and Web apps from a single project.

If you need any help redesigning your app in Thunkable X please let us know and I’d be happy to set up a video call.

Age shouldn’t be a barrier - we’d love to see you Successfully Thunk your app with us - let us know how we can help!

Hello domhnallohanlon,
Thank you very much for your reply and offer of help.
I’ve just looked at the essay I’ve written below - I hope you have the patience to read it!

To answer your queries:
My statement that “most of the people…use I-Phones” was based on a miniscule sample ( I asked my 3 daughters and their husbands to request their friends and colleagues to download and test Imps Away and (hopefully) donate. That covered maybe 10 to 15 people in the age range 40 to 50. I also asked their 6 children, aged between 12 and 21 to do the same. That brought in maybe another 10 to 15. Quite a lot of responders viewed it on someone else’s Android phone and asked for an IOS version, which is why I discovered Thunkable.

So, I found the following link
and, with a couple of objections from Thunkable, I uploaded my .aia file, which seemed to work ok.

This left me with Thunkable being quite willing to produce an android version of the app but with no clue how to convert to IOS. Presumably, from what I infer from your reply, there is no Thunkable mechanism to carry out this conversion - clearly my misunderstanding.

I presume that Thunkable has grown from AI2 since the “jigsaw” pieces look identical and seem to work the same way (hence my assumption).

Regarding your kind offer of video help, I don’t know what to say - Imps Away was written for the specific purpose of raising money to help the UK’s NHS workers (Doctors, Nurses and Carers) during the current pandemic. Imps Away (in the Google Play Store) has raised £370. Public awareness is moving on and I don’t believe my investing $99/year to publish an IOS version would have any chance of breaking even (I’d be better to send the money direct to the charity myself!)

However, In November this year, there will be another National Fund Raising event called “Save the Children” and I have been considering modifying Imps Away for that event - if I complete that early enough to publicise it outside my “family and friends circle” it might raise a lot more. Thunkable seems to use the same commands, routines etc as AI2 so one possibility would for me be to create the modified app in Thunkable which, I think???, would allow me to produce both Android and IOS versions (is this correct?). This scenario might well involve me asking for help/guidance from you. If you agree, would that be better done via a new forum entry? or direct by email?

If you’ve read this far, I applaud your stamina and thank you!

@themcewens03c Thanks for the detailed feedback Charlie.

So, it sounds like you’re using our legacy platform, “Thunkable Classic” which has been scheduled for retirement since last year.

As it happens, our founders and a number of our past and present staff were involved with the AI2 project back in their MIT and Google days and we’re still all good friends to this day.

The “jigsaw” pieces that both platforms use are part of another open-source project called Blockly which is used by a lot of low-code and learn-to-code platforms such as Scratch and micro:bit.

At the moment, our focus is on our cross-platform product, Thunkable X. This allows you to design a single project, use Blockly to add the logic, and export as an iOS, Android or Web App.

As you mentioned, the $99/year fee for an Apple developer account might be put to better use, but if you went down the web app route then a Web App can run on pretty much any device with a web browser (including iOS devices)

The only bad news I have for you is that unfortunately the older .aia files (which are Android only) are not compatible with the Thunkable X platform, because it supports Android, iOS and Mobile Web simultaneously.

Thanks again for your prompt reply.
I have some questions:

  1. When I start Thunkable X and create a new app (I’m trying, initially, to work through the “text to speech” tutorial, then planning to proceed through subsequent tutorials) Thunkable Live (on my Android phone) often doesn’t reflect the blocks I’ve programmed. But testing it on the PC does reflect them. Is this the problem mentioned in the Thunkable Live Reviews? Is testing only on my PC going to ensure a working app when it is published?
  2. I don’t possess an iPhone. Can I somehow export/send it to my remote testers, who do have iPhones?
  3. When I start TX, the screen I see is not like the one in the above tutorial. I assume the tutorial is not as current as the on-line TX?
  4. If I use the Web App route it will cost $21/month (or $25 for one month) to publish. If I choose the $25 plan will the app remain permanently available after the one month?
  5. Presumably the Web App will only be playable when the user has Internet access? Or, can it be downloaded and played off-line?
  6. Again, if I use the Web App route, will it run on both Windows and Apple (and any other that I haven’t thought of) platforms?
  7. As I mentioned before (based on my very limited survey) iOS availability seems important in my circumstances. You mention “export as an iOS, Android or Web APP”. Is there any other way to make the iOS version available to many users, other than by the $99 route?

Since my objective in creating any future apps will be to drum up charity donations, I want to ensure that the charities get a lot more out of it than I pay in!