Previewing your app through our dashboard is pretty awesome. You can make changes to the editor and then see your app update in real time on the emulator.
However, it’s just not quite the same experience as checking out your app on the device it’s meant for — your phone!
That’s why we have two device-ready preview solutions for you:
- Our BuildFire Previewer App (recommended method)
- Text to Preview in a Browser
Let’s look at how you can do both.
The BuildFire Previewer App
What is the BuildFire Previewer App? Available for both iOS and Android, the Previewer App lets you… well, preview your app. Haha :)
It’s useful for three main reasons.
- You can preview your app before you push out changes to your live app so you can test them out before your users do.
- You’ll have a native mobile experience. On the emulator, some plugins won’t give you the full experience due to a brower’s inherent limitations. On the Previewer, however, your app will act just as if it were a published app that was downloaded on your phone.
- You can test your user experience in a more realistic and true manner. Most of your users will be interacting with your app on your phone, so it’s good for you to try it there too.
You can find the Buildfire Previewer app by clicking on the following links:
Please Note: the iOS version will require you to manually trust BuildFire as a developer on your device.
How to Preview Your App with the App Previewer
Step 1: Login
Once it’s installed, tap on the app icon to open it and enter the same login information as your Buildfire account.
Step 2: Search for your app and tap on it
After logging in, you’ll see a list of all of the apps to which you are assigned. To open one, simply tap on it.
Step 3: Navigate through your app
Navigating through it will give you an idea of what the app will be like once published. Any changes you make on your emulator will update in your previewer app.
Step 4: Reload the Previewer (as needed)
If you’ve opened your app in the Previewer and you make additional changes, close the Previewer and reload your app to see your updated content.
That’s the BuildFire Previewer App!
If for some reason you can’t access the Previewer App, keep reading to see an alternate way to check out your app through a browser.
Preview on Your Phone/Device’s Web Browser
Important: Since it uses a browser to view the app and not a native environment, you should note that certain features may not work as intended when your app is actually published.
The Preview on Phone option lets you view a web version of your app on your phone’s browser.
Step 1: Click "Preview" on the Emulator
To access the Preview link, just click “Preview” at the bottom of the emulator.
Step 2: Enter your phone number
Then enter in your phone number with the area code. You should receive a text momentarily with a link to preview your app.
Please Note: This will not work if you are using a non-US phone number. In this case, we suggest you use our Previewer App.
In addition to this article, we recommend checking out the following related articles so that you have a better insight into how to use the system to its fullest advantage:
Still have questions? No problem! Reach out to us and we’d be happy to help :)