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Construct 3 Mobile App Build Service now live

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We're pleased to finally launch Construct 3's mobile app build service! You can try it out right now in Construct 3 (from r29.2) until Sunday May 28th, since we've enabled all features for the duration of the Newgrounds Gamejam.

All you need to do is choose the Cordova export option. When the export finishes, click the Build apps button. It will process the build in the background, and when it's done you'll see a prompt with an option to download the app. So it's one extra click to get an APK directly from Construct 3! You can also run builds from any OS, even including on Android — so you can export, build and run an Android app all from the same device.

Initial support

As we said previously, at first the build service only generates Android APKs (debug or release), or an Android Studio project for you to customise yourself. Android APKs do not bundle Crosswalk so have a minimal overhead — the Ghost Shooter example produces an APK just over 2mb, which includes all the script, data and assets for the game as well. You can also get an Xcode project for iOS, which you can use to build the app on a Mac. We hope to add support for directly building iOS apps (.ipa files) in future too, but it's a little trickier to set up for iOS so will take a bit longer.

The build service is quite complex and we're still ironing out the kinks. The service may have some brief outages during the beta while we discover and fix any issues that come up. If you see any "build failed" messages, please try again later, and then file a bug if it still doesn't work.

What next?

As mentioned, we hope to add full iOS builds too. Currently Android release builds also need signing before they can be run or published; we'll be looking in to getting the build service to sign apps for you as well. Note that means at the moment you can't just run a release build APK on an Android device for testing. If you just want to quickly test if the APK works, use a debug build.

We'll also be polishing the experience to make sure the UI and notifications or error messages around the process are as clear and useful as possible. What you see today is just the first iteration!

We're also working on new IAP and ad plugins, which we'll also integrate to the build service to make sure they work pain-free. Unfortunately these won't be available during the Newgrounds Gamejam, but we're working to get them to you soon.

Give it a spin!

It's easy days, but we're still keen for your feedback and to hear how it works out for you. So head over to editor.construct.net, log in, and try it out! It's free for anyone to use until the gamejam ends on Sunday May 28th.

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