Tokens is an app that makes generating promo codes for iOS and macOS apps extraordinarily easy. It's also extremely well-known in the Apple developer community.

Unfortunately, it gained the reputation of abandonware in recent years. And there's a reason for that. It was barely updated since 2013. It didn't support promo codes for in-app purchases and subscriptions – the business model for the majority of apps today. Thus, it became too obsolete to be relevant for app developers in 2020.

We at Gikken want to breathe new life into it. We're thrilled to announce that we purchased the app from its previous owner, Denis Hennessy, on December 24, 2019.

Actually, Tokens has a rich ownership history. It was originally developed by Padraig and Oisin from Supertop, then took over by Denis from PeerAssembly, now us. Hopefully, it stops here.

Why Did We Do It?

I was using Tokens for a while. Our support is quite heavy with tickets for which the easiest solution is a promo code (lost Apple IDs, family sharing issues, etc), so the app has always been a remarkable timesaver for me. Every Apple developer knows what a pain using App Store Connect is, right?

When I switched to iPad for some tasks, I instantly felt a shortage of Tokens on iOS. I started spending 5 minutes and wrangling frequent ASC downtimes to generate a promo code again. I emailed Denis asking if he was planning an iOS app. He said he wasn't sure. I casually mentioned it to my co-founder Andrew, to what he replied, 'Why don't we offer him a partnership? We make the app, he helps us market it as Tokens, we split revenue.' It sounded good to me, so I emailed Denis back.

And this was the response:

After a quick pondering, we decided to go for it. Not everyone gets a chance to have a carte blanche on a product they actively use and which saves them at least 10–15 minutes (and even more nerves) every day. Also, we saw an amazing opportunity to ramp up awareness about Gikken, since almost every iOS/macOS developer and reporter has heard about Tokens. And now, we're the company that's going to make it great again!

What's Next?

Of course, we didn't purchase it to shut down or leave unchanged, so we're planning a major makeover – Tokens 2.

Most importantly, Tokens will finally start supporting IAP promo codes! On top of that, we'll refresh the look and make an iOS app to make it possible to generate codes on the go.

I created a Coming Soon page for the update with all sorts of information:

All current users will be the first in line for a beta which we expect to launch in late March. Tokens 2 will be a new, fully-rethought app. It means the current Tokens app will stay untouched. In other words, if you're using it, you'll be able to keep using it forever.

One of the problems with the old Tokens was its unsustainability. That's also the reason why it was re-sold so many times, and why its previous developers lost interest in supporting it at some point. It was a one-off purchase. Fair enough, there are not so many Apple developers to generate enough ongoing revenue to keep the app frequently updated from getting new users all the time.

Tokens 2 will be subscription-based. Price is yet to be defined, however all current users and beta will get a juicy discount.

If you want to be a beta tester of Tokens 2, please subscribe here:

To contact us and stay up to date with the development process, you can follow me, Andrew, and @UseTokens on Twitter.

–Alex Chernikov, CEO of Gikken