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Hands on with Tokens for Mac

Keeping on top of your promo codes can be a big hassle. Most developers end up with text files by the dozen or complicated spreadsheets. You want to know when items were issued (they expire in four weeks), who they were shared with (so you can follow up with potential reviewers) and how many remain so you can manage the 50 codes allocated for each app revision.

Enter Tokens for Mac. This app simplifies the process of managing promo codes. With it, you can generate trackable codes that ping you back when they're redeemed. I had a chance recently to sit down and work with this app as well as talk with its developer, Oisin Prendiville.

DevJuice Generate, share and track promo codes with Tokens for Mac

To start using the software, just sign in to iTunes Connect. From there Tokens takes over and manages the process of contacting Apple and retrieving product info. Because the app is basically scraping the App Store, its use falls outside the Mac App Store guidelines. You need to purchase the utility directly from the developer.

Tokens starts by showing you a list of all your apps once you've signed in. You immediately see the remaining available promo code slots, which are shown as "available." Upon choosing a code to redeem, Tokens requests it from iTunes, signs the contracts for you (a convenience I find greatly amusing, which you may too if you think about it for a few seconds) and downloads the code. You're now ready to share it.

DevJuice Generate, share and track promo codes with Tokens for Mac

You can share tokens by email, Facebook, Twitter, IM and by copying to the pasteboard. I'm thinking that most developers will simply choose email, which is what I used to share a copy of my new Mac App Art Helper with Oisin.

I really like how well the app focuses on tracking and management. Those you share the promo code with (with a URL like this one: http://tokn.co/5m7tjqwq) are presented with a clean, professional, web-based interface that launches the App Store and redeems the software with a single further click.

You don't have to worry about sending instructions on how to find the "Redeem" section, enter the code, etc. It truly is a click & share solution that most developers will adore.

DevJuice Generate, share and track promo codes with Tokens for Mac

Tokens for Mac is just getting started and has the usual issues with rough edges in its initial design. It does, however, offer a tool that the developer community can definitely use. After playing with the app for about a week I can say that, while there are some interface and usability issues I'd refine, Tokens for Mac is a darn useful tool.

The video that follows offers a good overview of the product and its features. Tokens for Mac is free for a single app, or US$29 for unlimited apps. You can easily use it with multiple developer accounts, and it handles both the iOS and Mac App Stores. The developers are looking into expanding this to iBooks, but that feature is not yet available at this time.

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