Deliverables for other platforms/stores TBD based on platform owner requirements.
Please read and follow Apple’s iPhone developer guidelines carefully; failure to do this can cause significant delays to app release. The developer is absolved from adhering to any and all PBS specifications that violate Apple's policies, in the event that the PBS specifications are contradictory or out of date. However, please do notify PBS if this is the case so that (1) PBS may update these specifications and (2) because from time to time Apple may grant special exceptions, so do not automatically assume that these specifications are invalid.
Applications (“Apps”) must be compatible with the iPhone SDK 4.0 and above. The app must be tested and qualified on the newest release of the iPhone OS at the time of final delivery.
Apps must be native apps developed in Xcode, i.e., not using a third party self-publishing tool, unless otherwise agreed in advance.
PBS library modules must be incorporated, as may be provided by PBS. These include standard mechanisms for sharing/community features, localization, TV schedules and cross-promotion, among other planned modules.
The developer should state if the app will require Internet access and, if so, which functionality will be rendered inoperable without connectivity and how disconnected state will be handled.
There is a 20MB file size cap for downloads of apps over the 3G network. Exceeding this cap means that the user cannot download or purchase the app. If the app is projected to be above that size when compressed, please note this in the specification or alpha phase of development.
Apps should be usable on iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad and compiled as a universal binary unless otherwise agreed.
THE APP MUST BE DELIVERED AND SUBMITTED TO APPLE BY PBS USING THE PBS DEVELOPMENT AND DISTRIBUTION CERTIFICATE. PBS will provide you with development certificates and provisioning profiles. If early stages of development occur under the developer’s internal certificates, PBS will require a minimum of five device IDs for review purposes.
Use of video clips of length greater than two minutes from programs airing on PBS will require discussion at the concept phase.
HTTP Live Streaming video must be transcoded by PBS and served using PBS’s “COVE” backend infrastructure for optimized performance on the iPhone OS.
Usability Guidelines for All Ages
In general, refer to and follow the iPhone Human Interface Guidelines, located in the iPhone Reference Library.
Due the small screen size, visual design should be as simple and streamlined as possible. All elements on screen should have a function.
For standard elements (turning sound on/off) we recommend making use of the device Settings panel.
Text should always be presented in a manner consistent with the changing contrast needs of a mobile device; dark sans-serif text on a light background is preferred.
Hot Zones - Each interactive element should have a 40x40 pixel hot zone to fit a fingertip.
Navigation - Always have a clear, consistent way to return to the previous screen or main menu. Back arrows and home icons are generally recommended.
Cross-promotion - A button and/or banner space must be included on the main menu of the app that links to other PBS or PBS KIDS apps, as appropriate, in the App Store.
Splash - The splash screen should be short and, if possible considering application load time, allow the user to skip to the app content by tapping the screen. The splash screen must feature the PBS logo, the PBS URL and the app title. A second screen for producer/developer is permitted but must be shared.
App information - Both of these elements should be available, preferably from the primary menu screen of the app.
Must include copyright line for IP owner (varies by contract) and copyrights/trademarks for Series/characters to be provided by PBS.
Privacy Notice -
Below are explanations of key deliverables. Other deliverables may be requested by PBS, depending on the type of app you produce.
- Concept/design documentation: consists of screenshots and a written description of app flow and functionality. A development schedule and line-item budget should be attached, with time allotted for PBS feedback at each stage.
- Alpha version: a completely interactive version of the app. May be missing some elements but should represent intended behavior.
- Beta: the complete app with final art and functionality, but with known bugs and issues documented in release notes. Note that there may be multiple iterations of alpha/beta.
- Source code for PBS review and archiving.
If you are using your own mobile provisioning profile during the build process, please include the following device UDIDs in the profile for each build:
- [PBS will provide the most-current UDIDs at the outset of each project.]
PBS will need all source files for the project, as well as up to three final binary files. These files should be delivered to PBS as separate ZIP files. Both the ZIP file and the binary should have the same name as the official name of the app that will be in the App Store. All final builds should be compiled with the most-current Apple SDK and with the distribution certificate supplied by PBS. All apps should be tested on the iPod Touch as well as on the iPhone, using the newest OS available.
- A Distribution Build that PBS will upload for Apple technical review and posting in the iTunes Store. This should be compiled with the most recent version of the iPhone SDK at the time of delivery, using the PBS Distribution Certificate and posted to your project site as a ZIP file, with the suffix _dist.
- A Release Build that PBS can share with Apple for their editorial review when Apple considers promoting the app. This should be compiled with the most recent version of the iPhone SDK at the time of delivery, using the PBS Distribution Certificate as an Ad Hoc build with the suffix _rel.
- A Demo Build (only if requested by PBS) that could be incorporated into either Apple’s standard demo device image for a period of time (generally one calendar quarter). This must have limited content, so please consult with PBS to find the best way to limit the content for the demo build. This build must be compiled with the most recent version of the iPhone SDK at the time of delivery, using PBS Distribution certificate as specified above. Both the ZIP file and the binary should have the same name as the official name of the app that will be in the App Store; primary screens must be modified to indicate that it is a demo version. Carefully read and follow the “Instructions for Submitting your iPhone/iPod touch Demo Application” found in the Apple Developers Center.
Artwork for iTunes Store and PBS Promotions
- App Icon: 57x57 pixels, 72ppi, RGB flattened, no transparency, 24bit PNG image file format
- Large App Icon: 512px square, 72ppi, RGB flattened, no transparency, high-quality JPG or TIFF
- 5 Screenshots with specs per the iTunes developer guide:
- 320x460 to 320x480 portrait
- 480x300 to 480x320 landscape
- 72ppi, RGB, flattened, no transparency
- High-quality JPEG or TIFF image file format
- Page Background: Square image in either vector (.eps or .ai) format or 600 x 600 .tif or .psd with transparent background.
- Title Card: portrait-sized image in vector (.eps or .ai) format or as a.tif, . or .psd.
- Ultra-Wide-Screen: a horizontally extended version of title card with dimensions of at least 2.2-to-1 with fill on one or both sides so that PBS can easily crop to a variety of aspect ratios (2:1, 4:3, etc.). This can be vector (.eps or .ai) format or as a .tif, or .psd at least 800 pixels wide.
- 300 dpi print-ready screenshots for possible publication use.
See attached for more detail on the Page Background and Title Card: