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Publishing an app

From: Building Mobile Apps for Multiple Devices with Flash Professional

Video: Publishing an app

One of the very exciting steps in app development is the actual publishing of the app and then ultimately seeing it on a device for testing purposes. So this is really interesting, I'd say this app is at that point where I actually want to publish out the file. So I'm going beyond the Flash Player version, and what I want to do is I want to select AIR for iOS. So I can make an iOS or Android app. So I'll just review these settings really fast. AIR for iOS, Edit application settings.

Publishing an app

One of the very exciting steps in app development is the actual publishing of the app and then ultimately seeing it on a device for testing purposes. So this is really interesting, I'd say this app is at that point where I actually want to publish out the file. So I'm going beyond the Flash Player version, and what I want to do is I want to select AIR for iOS. So I can make an iOS or Android app. So I'll just review these settings really fast. AIR for iOS, Edit application settings.

You can see that it's going to create this ipa file. It's going to create this native app file for iOS, very exciting. So from here on out, it's really just filling the blank. Give it an app name, like that; give it a Version number if I want 1. 0.1, again, just letters and you can add periods in there. The Aspect ratio should be Landscape. It should go full screen so it's actually going to cover up the notification bar. I can leave the rendering. But check this out, Device.

I can change it from iPhone and iPad to both, so this is an app that's going to scale well whether it's on an iPhone or iPad. So that's why I'm going to select that third one there. Also note that I can go ahead and include files in here as well. So if I'm pointing to any external files whether there are XML or there are JPEGs, images, whatever, I can pull those in. Now, something to note about iOS is I can't load in an external SWF and have it execute the ActionScript in that SWF file, okay, because it doesn't use the Flash Player or AIR, therefore it doesn't know what to do with any code that gets loaded in from an external SWF file.

So you can only load in SWF files that have animation in them. Those are the only external files that you can load in so the ActionScript will not execute. Key thing to remember there, but I'd say we're fine here. We have the SWF, the XML; this just describes what's going on with the SWF file. So largely within this XML is really just all of this content. Let's check out the Deployment tab. Right in here this is what makes IOS a little more tricky to develop for because you need to go ahead and get a signed certificate from Apple and you need a specific Provisioning profile that's actually on your device that you want to test on.

So this makes things a little more difficult. It's actually much easier to use Android. So I'm just going to skip this tab, go to Icons and you can see right in here you can point to ping files for each one of these icons. So those are all the settings for publishing. I'll just select OK and I'm going to go ahead and check out AIR for Android. So with that selected I can check out the settings. It keeps all of those settings, notice the App ID is something I can enter in here. That's usually a reverse domain name so it will be com.lynda.MonsterMatchUp something like that, but this App ID is actually what you'd get from Apple.

You can just enter it in that's why this is set up this way. But I can enter anything in here for Android, keeps all my other settings. I can go to the Android Deployment's tab. And this is great, I don't have to get a certificate from anyone else, I can create my own. So click Create, Paul Trani, enter in all this info right in here just like that. Validity period needs to be good for 25 years and then just save out that app. So let's just save it to my Desktop and I will call this PaulTraniCert, because I can use it for more than just this app.

Click Save, click OK and it says that Self-signed certificate was created. Click OK, type-in the password just like that and remember it. So we're good to go there. I can give it a deployment's type. Pick any one of these, I'll just leave this as Device release. Now for Android, the AIR runtime is required. So if the user doesn't have the AIR runtime it will ping the Google Android Market to download it or the Amazon Appstore Market as well depending on where they got the app.

So you can always control that in here from this drop-down dialog box right there. I'm not going to do this right now but this is the great thing is you can install and launch the application on a connected device, which is great. But all I want to do is again just make this apk. Okay, so Deployment looks good. I can go to Icons, again, point to the ping files that you want to use. Go to Permissions and here's where you notify the user that you're going to be doing these various things. So you might need to check this checkbox if you're using the Internet to one of the user, that it might be using up some of their wireless bandwidth.

In this case, it doesn't need that, so I'm going to uncheck that and I'd say we're good to go. So I'm going to go ahead and hit Publish and let's see what happens. Clicking Publish, makes the SWF goes through and it will give me this warning. It says, hey you know what, it was created successfully but a warning occurred in the application XML. So it's a permission requirement going on there, and this is an issue with Flash Professional. So if you don't want this warning, all it means is you need to come in here and just check one of these. I can check Internet and click Publish and that warning won't pop up.

It will actually create that apk file. So let's go ahead and take a look at that apk file. I'll go ahead and go to my Desktop. Here's my certificate that I created in here, here's the XML and SWF that were created and really these two files are packaged up right into this apk file. In fact, if I take a look at this XML, I've opened it up in Flash, but you can use any Text Editor program. You can see, everything I entered in the Publish settings is now in here.

You can see it's pointing to that SWF file that gets packaged up into the apk even clear down here to the Permissions set to Internet. So that's what the XML file is. Now all I need to do is I can literally take this file and maybe e-mail it to myself and access that on my phone to install the app or even put it on a website URL and install it that way. So you can see it's easy to make files for Android and even iOS to test your app on.

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