App packaging and signing services

Mobile Center supports testing both packaged and non-packaged native and hybrid apps.

When to use a packaged app

Although both packaged and non-package apps are supported by Mobile Center, packaging is still required in the following cases:

MC version 1.52 or earlier Tests created with Mobile Center 1.52 or earlier for both hybrid and native apps.

TruClient scripts


To generate transaction response time information.
You must also define Object Exists end events in your TruClient script steps (for native apps).


For photo, video, and fingerprint authentication simulation. iOS GPS simulation also requires a packaged app.

Hybrid apps


  • Using tests created with Mobile Center 2.00 or earlier.
  • Conducting performance testing of hybrid apps.
  • Replaying hybrid app tests on AWS.

Additional considerations

There are also some differences between packaged and non-packaged apps in the following areas:

Considerations when using non-packaged hybrid apps

When using non-packaged hybrid apps, note the following:

Mobile Center packaging and signing services

After you upload an app to Mobile Center, the server automatically attempts to package the app. This gives you the option of selecting either a packaged app or the original version when running a test.

Whenever the content of an app package is changed, for example when the app is repackaged with record and replay libraries, the app also needs to be re-signed. If the app package is not re-signed, you will not be able to install the app on a device.

To enable automatic packaging and signing of apps by Mobile Center, the administrator needs to Set up automatic app packaging and signing services.

You can also package and sign apps manually and then upload them to Mobile Center. For details see, Package an Android app manually or Package an iOS app manually on a Mac machine.

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Multiple packaging services

When working with many devices and workspaces, you may need to use different signing services for your devices. For example, in iOS environments you can only sign up to 100 devices with a single certificate. In addition, you may need to provide a solution for one group, without having to rely on the certificate from another group.

Beginning with version 2.80, Mobile Center allows admins to define other packaging services in addition to the primary packaging service, and assign them to different workspaces. This feature lets you assign a separate certificate to specific users, who are assigned to the same workspace.

Note: This feature is available only with a Trial, Enterprise, or Ultimate license. For more details, see Mobile Center editions.

Once a signing service is assigned to a workspace, all apps uploaded in that workspace will be packaged with the iOS packaging service defined for that workspace. As an admin, you can also remove packaging services, but not the primary one.

For details on how to distribute the signing services, see View and manage connectors.

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Certificates required when signing iOS apps

To test an iOS app with Mobile Center, you may need to re-sign your app. This section explains when you need to re-sign your app, and what certificate to use.

Agent and Agent Launcher apps

The Agent and Agent Launcher apps must be re-signed with a development certificate of an Apple Developer Account, and a development provisioning profile belonging to the same account.

Other iOS apps

Application under Test Mode Re-sign required? Required certificate
iOS native app Packaged app Yes. This is part of the packaging process. Any type of certificate of either an Apple Developer or Enterprise account
iOS native app Non- packaged app No, unless your organization needs to re-sign the app for some specific reason. Any type of certificate of either an Apple Developer or Enterprise account
iOS hybrid app Packaged app Yes

For iOS versions 8.4.1 and higher: Development certificate of an Apple Developer account

For versions lower than iOS 8.4.1: Development certificate of either an Apple Developer or Enterprise account

iOS hybrid app Non-packed app Yes To identify WebView, development certificate of an Apple Developer account

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See also: