Run Your NativeScript Apps in the Developer App

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Select the Progress AppBuilder client you are currently using for development.

IDE

The Progress Telerik Platform NativeScript developer app is a test utility for iOS and Android and is available as a free app in the App Store and Google Play.

The NativeScript developer app acts as a container app. When you deploy your app on the device, the AppBuilder Compiler Service pushes it down to device and runs it inside the NativeScript developer app container. The NativeScript developer app does not interfere with your app look and feel.

The NativeScript developer app is available for iOS and Android.

  • When you develop for iOS, you can run your app on iOS devices without building and signing it with a provisioning profile and cryptographic identity.
  • When you develop for Android, you can run your app on Android devices without building an application package and installing it on the device.

You can use the NativeScript developer app as a standalone app or along with the Platform companion app.

Limitations

The following limitations apply when you run your app in the developer app.

  • You cannot test apps which target a NativeScript version different than the version currently supported by the NativeScript developer app.
  • You cannot test device orientation limitations in the developer app.
  • You cannot test changes in AndroidManifest.xml.
  • You cannot test changes in Info.plist.
  • You cannot test device families limitations in the developer app.
  • You cannot test icons and splash screens in the developer app.
  • You cannot test your release build configuration.
  • On iOS devices, you need to have the Cordova developer app installed to be able to LiveSync changes to the NativeScript developer app.

Supported Modules

You can rest all NativeScript built-in modules available in the tns_modules folder or as the tns-core-modules dependency in your package.json file. In addition, you can test the following custom npm modules if you have added them as a dependency in your package.json file:

Prerequisites

  • Verify that the NativeScript developer app is installed on your device.
  • Verify that your preferred AppBuilder client is running and you are logged in.
  • (Optional) Verify that the Platform companion app is installed on your device.
  • (Optional) If you want to manage your NativeScript app developed with extension for Visual Studio from the Platform companion app, verify that you have connected your code with the cloud.

Procedure

In-Browser

Run from the Platform Companion App

You can load your app inside the NativeScript developer app from the Platform companion app. This way you can view your app logs and test the available build configurations for your app.

  1. Run the Platform companion app.
  2. On the home screen, tap My Apps.
  3. If prompted to log in, select a login provider and enter your login credentials.
  4. (Optional) Verify that you are using the correct Telerik Platform account.
    1. On the Apps screen, tap the user icon in the top right corner.
    2. Select the account that you want to use and wait for the operation to complete.
    3. Tap Done.
  5. (Optional) Configure the app that you want to run.
    1. On the Apps screen, tap the app that you want to run.
    2. Tap Configuration.
    3. Select the configuration that you want to apply to this app.
      Option Description
      Debug
      • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
      • Includes any *.debug.* files in your application package, removes the debug modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
      Release
      • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
      • Includes any *.release.* files in your application package, removes the release modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
    4. Return to the Apps screen.
  6. Tap Open.
    If you see Install instead of Open, you have not installed the NativeScript developer app on your device. Install the missing developer app and try again.

Run Over the Air

You can deploy your app in the NativeScript developer app from QR code or URL.

The NativeScript developer app recognizes and loads NativeScript apps from URLs which begin with nativescript://https

AppBuilder produces the QR codes and the download URLs to your built content per build. Your shared QR codes or URLs provide access to a particular build and have a limited life.

  1. In the top menu bar, click RunBuild.
  2. Select iOS or Android.
  3. Select NativeScript developer app
  4. Select a build configuration, and click Next.
    Option Description
    Debug
    • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
    • Includes any *.debug.* files in your application package, removes the debug modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
    Release
    • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
    • Includes any *.release.* files in your application package, removes the release modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
  5. Deploy from QR code.
    1. On the device, run the Platform companion app.
    2. Tap QR Scanner.
    3. Scan the QR code that AppBuilder shows.
  6. Deploy from URL.
    1. Select the URL above the QR code that AppBuilder shows.
    2. Copy the URL and share it to your device.
    3. On the device, use a browser to open the URL.
  7. Wait for the download to complete.
    On the device, the app loads in the NativeScript developer app.
  8. (Optional) Share the QR code or the URL with your testers.

On the device, the app launches in the NativeScript developer app.

Windows

Run from the Platform Companion App

You can load your app inside the NativeScript developer app from the Platform companion app. This way you can view your app logs and test the available build configurations for your app.

  1. Run the Platform companion app.
  2. On the home screen, tap My Apps.
  3. If prompted to log in, select a login provider and enter your login credentials.
  4. (Optional) Verify that you are using the correct Telerik Platform account.
    1. On the Apps screen, tap the user icon in the top right corner.
    2. Select the account that you want to use and wait for the operation to complete.
    3. Tap Done.
  5. (Optional) Configure the app that you want to run.
    1. On the Apps screen, tap the app that you want to run.
    2. Tap Configuration.
    3. Select the configuration that you want to apply to this app.
      Option Description
      Debug
      • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
      • Includes any *.debug.* files in your application package, removes the debug modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
      Release
      • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
      • Includes any *.release.* files in your application package, removes the release modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
    4. Return to the Apps screen.
  6. Tap Open.
    If you see Install instead of Open, you have not installed the NativeScript developer app on your device. Install the missing developer app and try again.

Run Over the Air

You can deploy your app in the NativeScript developer app from QR code or URL.

The NativeScript developer app recognizes and loads NativeScript apps from URLs which begin with nativescript://https

AppBuilder produces the QR codes and the download URLs to your built content per build. Your shared QR codes or URLs provide access to a particular build and have a limited life.

  1. In the top menu bar, click RunBuild.
  2. Select iOS or Android.
  3. Select NativeScript companion app, select a build configuration, and click Next.
  4. Deploy from QR code.
    1. On the device, run the Platform companion app.
    2. Tap QR Scanner.
    3. Scan the QR code that AppBuilder shows.
  5. Deploy from URL.
    1. Click Copy link and share the URL to your device.
    2. On the device, use a browser to open the URL.
  6. Wait for the download to complete.
    On the device, the app loads in the NativeScript developer app.
  7. (Optional) Share the QR code or the URL with your testers.

On the device, the app launches in the NativeScript developer app.

Run Over Cable

AppBuilder automatically deploys your app in the NativeScript developer app when you connect a device to your system, if the NativeScript developer app is installed on the device.

  1. Connect your device to your system via USB cable.
    For more information about connecting Android devices, see Connect Android Devices.
  2. In the status bar, click Show Mobile Devices and verify that AppBuilder lists your connected device.
  3. In the Devices pane, verify that Companion app LiveSync is enabled.
  4. In the status bar, click Show Output and verify that AppBuilder has deployed your app files on the connected device.
  5. On the device, launch the NativeScript developer app.

Visual Studio

Run from the Platform Companion App

You can load your app inside the NativeScript developer app from the Platform companion app. This way you can view your app logs and test the available build configurations for your app.

  1. Run the Platform companion app.
  2. On the home screen, tap My Apps.
  3. If prompted to log in, select a login provider and enter your login credentials.
  4. (Optional) Verify that you are using the correct Telerik Platform account.
    1. On the Apps screen, tap the user icon in the top right corner.
    2. Select the account that you want to use and wait for the operation to complete.
    3. Tap Done.
  5. (Optional) Configure the app that you want to run.
    1. On the Apps screen, tap the app that you want to run.
    2. Tap Configuration.
    3. Select the configuration that you want to apply to this app.
      Option Description
      Debug
      • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
      • Includes any *.debug.* files in your application package, removes the debug modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
      Release
      • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
      • Includes any *.release.* files in your application package, removes the release modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
    4. Return to the Apps screen.
  6. Tap Open.
    If you see Install instead of Open, you have not installed the NativeScript developer app on your device. Install the missing developer app and try again.

Run Over the Air

You can deploy your app in the NativeScript developer app from QR code or URL.

The NativeScript developer app recognizes and loads NativeScript apps from URLs which begin with nativescript://https

AppBuilder produces the QR codes and the download URLs to your built content per build. Your shared QR codes or URLs provide access to a particular build and have a limited life.

  1. In the top menu bar, click AppBuilderBuild <app_name> in Cloud.
  2. Select iOS or Android.
  3. Select NativeScript companion app.
  4. Select a build configuration, and click Next.
    Option Description
    Debug
    • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
    • Includes any *.debug.* files in your application package, removes the debug modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
    Release
    • Adds the plugins that you have enabled for this configuration and sets their plugin variables with the correct values.
    • Includes any *.release.* files in your application package, removes the release modifiers from the file names and renames them to *.*.
  5. Deploy from QR code.
    1. On the device, run the Platform companion app.
    2. Tap QR Scanner.
    3. Scan the QR code that AppBuilder shows.
  6. Deploy from URL.
    1. Click Copy and share the URL to your device.
    2. On the device, use a browser to open the URL.
  7. Wait for the download to complete.
    On the device, the app loads in the NativeScript developer app.
  8. (Optional) Share the QR code or the URL with your testers.

On the device, the app launches in the NativeScript developer app.

Run Over Cable

AppBuilder automatically deploys your app in the NativeScript developer app when you connect a device to your system, if the NativeScript developer app is installed on the device.

  1. Connect your device to your system via USB cable.
    For more information about connecting Android devices, see Connect Android Devices.
  2. In the top menu bar, select AppBuilderDevices List and verify that AppBuilder lists your connected device.
  3. Verify that Companion app LiveSync is enabled.
  4. In the top menu bar, click ViewOutput to show the output for your app.
  5. In the Output window, from the Show output from drop-down menu, select AppBuilder and verify that the extension for Visual Studio has deployed your app files on the connected device.
  6. On the device, launch the NativeScript developer app.

CLI

Run Over the Air

You can deploy your app in the NativeScript developer app from a QR code.

AppBuilder produces the QR codes and the download URLs to your built content per build. Your shared QR codes or URLs provide access to a particular build and have a limited life.

  1. In the command prompt, navigate to the directory that contains your app files.
  2. Run the following command.

    appbuilder build <Platform> --companion <configuration>
    

    You can set one of the following platforms: ios or android. You can set one of the following configurations: --debug or --release.

  3. Deploy from QR code.
    1. On the device, run the Platform companion app.
    2. Tap QR Scanner.
    3. Scan the QR code that AppBuilder shows.
  4. (Optional) Share the QR code with your testers.

Run Over Cable

AppBuilder automatically deploys your app in the NativeScript developer app when you connect a device to your system, if the NativeScript developer app is installed on the device.

  1. Connect your device to your system via USB cable.
    For more information about connecting Android devices, see Connect Android Devices.
  2. In the command prompt, navigate to the directory that contains your app files.
  3. Run the following command to verify that AppBuilder lists your connected device.

    appbuilder device <Platform>
    

    You can set one of the following platforms: ios or android.

  4. Run the following command.

    appbuilder livesync <Platform> --companion
    

    You can set one of the following platforms: ios or android.

On the device, the NativeScript developer app launches and loads your app.

Next Steps

Examine the NativeScript API documentation and continue with your native development. After you modify your code, LiveSync your changes.

See Also

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