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Creating a multi-issue app for Android

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Use the build settings wizard to go through the process step by step

When creating an app build for the first time, a configuration wizard will walk you through the different steps and options of the build process. Once you saved that setting, you will be able to re-use it later for generating an update of that app.

Below is an overview of the different steps involved for creating a multi-issue Android app.

1. Choose a name for your setting

Usually the build setting name will refer to the publication name.

Choose a name for your setting

2. App type

Here you can select the type of app you wish to build:

App Store Kiosk

App Store Kiosk

This will generate a kiosk app that will essentially be an empty shell.

3. General Settings

General Settings

3.1. General

Application name

This is the name users will see on the home screen of the device.

Build For

Choose whether you want an app that supports Tablets, Phones, or both.

3.2. UI Languages

Here you can select the languages your app will support - alerts and error messages in your app will then be displayed in the system language specified on the device. 

3.3. App Store Rating

If you want to prompt the reader to rate your app on the app store, you need to check this option.

4. Analytics

Analytics

4.1. Google Analytics

  • If you want to gather analytics data for your publication, enter your web tracking code in the form of UA-XXXXX-Y.
  • You need to have a Google Analytics account to do this. In that account, create a mobile app entry for your publication.
  • Full analytics setup info is available here.

4.2. Localytics

For Localytics, which allows you to send messages to a subset of your readers, you can enter the keys for iOS and Android.

4.3. Twixl Publisher Platform

For multi-issue apps, the Twixl Distribution Platform will gather an extensive list of analytics data for you automatically, without the need for Google Analytics intgration.

5. Artwork

Artwork

5.1. App Icon

The app icon that will be displayed in the Home Screen of the device. Should have a size of 1024x1024 pixels.

5.2. Startup Screens for Tablets

These screens will be displayed while the app is starting up (if you do not select any images, the default ones will be used). They need to have the following dimensions:

  • Android Portrait: 800 x 1280 pixels
  • Android Landscape: 1280 x 800 pixels

5.3. Startup Screens for Phones

These screens will be displayed while the app is starting up (if you do not select any images, the default ones will be used). They need to have the following dimensions:

  • Portrait (4:3): 640 x 960 pixels
  • Portrait (16:9): 1242 x 2208 pixels
  • Landscape (16:9): 2208 x 1242 px

6. Code Signing

Code signing is a security measure to provide proof that you are indeed the publisher of an app.

Android Code Signing

Android Code Signing

This should be a reverse DNS name like com.yourdomain.yourpublication - if you are going to be creating an app for both the iPad and Android, the best practice is to use the same one as the one you used for the iPad.

7. App Store Kiosk Settings

Before you can enter the details below, you will need to go through the process of adding an app in the Twixl Distribution Platform.

Once you've done that, copy the application key from the platform and enter it here.

Now make sure to add your app in the Google Play Developer Console and select "Services & APIs", then copy the license key for your app, then paste it in the "Android License Key" field.

App Store Kiosk Settings

8. Create build

Create Build

Your are now ready to create a build of your app, according to the settings you specified. Later on you can also check the "Advanced Settings" to adjust more advanced settings that are not included in the wizard. 

9. Application options

Application options

When you create a build, you will get different options for your build, as shown below:

Version

Allows you to increment the version when you are updating your app

Platforms

Android - select Test build to create a version for internal testing or Android for Google Play for submitting to the Play store.

Publication

As a multi-issue app starts as an empty app, there is no need to select a publication.

Options

Irrelevant for Android.

10. Build process…

Build process...

The app will display information about the current build status.

11. Build succesful!

Build succesful!

When the build process has completed, you will be able to navigate to the resulting file in the Finder.

12. Resulting file

The result will be a file with extension .apk

You are now ready to deploy your app.

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