Make and deploy an app with customized branding to the app store for Android. See also What is a white label native app?
To learn more about the different aspects of deploying your app, see Deploy.
How do I create a white label native app?
To white label your AppSheet app for Android:
- Open the app in the AppSheet editor.
- Open the Manage > Deploy tab and click the White label section.
- Click Create a white-label version of this app for Android devices
This starts the white label native app creation process, which can take up to 24 hours.
You'll receive an email with links to download your App Bundle and APK files once the process is complete. Note that these links are only valid for 30 days, please download and keep your files somewhere accessible and do not use these links to share the app with your users.
The App Bundle can be uploaded to the Google Play Store and the APK file can be used to directly install your app on Android devices.
How do I distribute my app?
The most popular way to distribute a broadly available Android app is through the Google Play Store. Keep in mind that if you deploy to the Play Store, anybody will be able to download and install your app.
- To publish a white label app built by AppSheet, you'll first need to register for a publisher account with Google. To do so, visit the following page and follow the instructions: https://developer.android.com/distribute/googleplay/start.html.
- After you set up a publisher account, you'll be able to publish your white label app. To do so, visit the Google Play Developer Console (https://play.google.com/apps/publish) and click on the Create app button located in the top right.
- This will guide you through a process that will let you upload the App Bundle file to the store. It will ask you for some other information before you will be allowed to publish the app, including screenshots, a short description, icons, banners, and more.
- When prompted, enable App signing by Google Play.
After a few hours, your users will be able to download your app from the Google Play Store.
Make updates to your app in Google Play Store
Most changes you make in the AppSheet editor don't require you to upload a new version of your app to the Google Play Store. Your users will get your changes the next time they sync the app. Changes to the app's name or icon are exceptions and will require you to upload a newly generated version of your app. However, since some of AppSheet's internal improvements and new features can't be fetched through a sync, it is recommended that you upload the latest version of your app to the store about once a year to ensure your app is kept current.
To make updates to your app in Google Play Store:
- Go to the white label section of the AppSheet editor (Manage > Deploy > White label > Android) and click Disable or update the white-label version of this app for Android devices. Don't worry, this won't affect existing users.
- Click Create a white-label version of this app for Android devices to start the white labeling process.
You'll receive an email with links to download your App Bundle and APK files within 24 hours.
- Go to your app's page in the Play console and then select Production > Create new release.
- The rest of the process is similar to when you first uploaded your app. If your app was originally uploaded as an APK (for apps that were originally uploaded to the store before Aug 1 2021), upload the update as an APK as well and don't opt in to Play App Signing. If your app was originally uploaded as an App Bundle, continue to use App Bundles to upload updates.
In some cases, you may only want to deploy your app to a specific group of users, for example to employees in an organization.
- You can send the APK file via email, share it through a cloud file system, or even upload it to your website and share its URL. Your users will have to download the APK file, and open it on their Android phone.
- Before installation, it's important your users enable installation of apps from unknown sources. Typically, this setting is located either under the Security or Applications category in the settings app of your android phone. Enabling this setting is required for installing apps that did not come from the Google Play store.
- For more info on how to install an app using an APK file, refer to the following article: http://www.androidauthority.com/how-to-install-non-market-third-party-apps-on-your-phone-31494/