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Mobile App Storage

When testing mobile apps, you have the option to upload your app to our app storage. The benefits of app storage include:

  • Uploading all of your mobile apps to the same location for cross-device automated and live testing with virtual devices and real devices.
  • Sharing your uploaded apps with your team members.
  • Storing apps for up to 60 days.
  • App Storage supports app files in .apk, .aab, .ipa, or .zip format, up to 4GB.

What You'll Need

Rate Limiting

To increase service stability and prevent overload by a high volume of incoming traffic, we have set the following rate limits for uploading your mobile apps (effective from 14.11.2022):

Trial UsersNon Trial Users
Uploads
  • 5 Uploads per 15 minute window
  • 2 uploads in parallel
  • 100 uploads per 15 minute window
  • 15 uploads in parallel

Uploading Apps via UI

For information about using the Sauce Labs UI to upload your mobile file to app storage, see Uploading an App.

Uploading Apps via REST API

You can upload your mobile app programmatically using the File Storage API Methods. The API endpoints are Data center-specific, so make sure you are using the endpoint that is applicable for your account data center, as shown in the following example requests.

Considerations

When using the cURL sample requests below, consider the following:

  • The <path/to/your/file> variable must include the file itself, including the file extension.
  • The <filename.ext> variable is the portion of the path that is just the file itself and must also include the file extension. Otherwise, the upload will succeed, but your app will not be accessible to your tests.
  • The $SAUCE_USERNAME:$SAUCE_ACCESS_KEY variable assumes you have set your Sauce Labs credentials as environment variables.
Sample Request
curl -u "$SAUCE_USERNAME:$SAUCE_ACCESS_KEY" --location \
--request POST 'https://api.us-west-1.saucelabs.com/v1/storage/upload' \
--form 'payload=@"<path/to/your/file>"' \
--form 'name="<filename.ext>"'

Installing Apps from a Remote Location

Real Devices Only

If your app is downloadable from a remote location (e.g., AWS S3 bucket, a GitHub repository), you can provide a URL as the value for the app capability in your test, which will install the app onto the real devices prior to test execution.

note

Appium cannot log into secure locations, so apps installed via remote download must be accessible, so are then removed from the real device immediately following test completion, providing an added layer of security.

To install a remote app on a real device for a test:

  1. Make sure the app meets the requirements for Android and iOS Mobile App Testing.

  2. Ensure Sauce Labs has READ access to the app URL.

  3. In your Appium test script, enter the app file location URL as the app desired capability:

    Example Java Remote App URL Capability
    caps.setCapability("app", "https://github.com/saucelabs/sample-app-mobile/releases/download/2.3.0/Android.SauceLabs.Mobile.Sample.app.2.3.0.apk?raw=true");
LIMITATIONS

Android:

  • The Instrumentation feature will not work if the app is installed from external location.

iOS:

  • The app cannot be installed on public devices due to signing.
  • The app can be installed on private devices. However, to make this work you must add the UDID of the private device to the provisioning profile for iOS (see our resigning process to learn more).
  • The Instrumentation feature will not work if the app is installed from external location.

Accepted File Types 

App storage recognizes *.apk and *.aab files as Android apps and *.ipa or *.zip files as iOS apps. *.zip files (for simulator tests only) are parsed to determine whether a valid *.app bundle exists.

AAB App Signing

To install an *.apk app that is extracted from an *.aab file, Sauce Labs must sign the *.apk using its own signature. In such cases, Sauce Labs signs both the app and testApp to ensure matching signatures, even if instrumentation is disabled. Otherwise, the app installation will fail. For more information, see Android App Bundles.

You can also upload and store other file types for generic use, such as a pre-run executable, package, or binary. Some of the formats for this type of use case include:

  • *.js
  • *.py
  • *.tar
  • *.zip
  • *.sh
  • *.bat

Team Management Sync

All uploaded files are shared with the same team. Members can only access files that are shared with the team where you contribute/participate. Organization admins have access to all files in your organization.

For more information about managing access to your organization, see Managing User Information.

Using Application Storage with Automated Test Builds

After successfully uploading your file to app storage, you need to reference the unique app Identifier (file_id) in your test code to retrieve and use your app for automated tests.

For example, let's assume you've updated a new version of your app using the /upload endpoint. The JSON response would be something like:

{
"item":{
"id":"379c301a-199c-4b40-ad45-4a95e5f30a3a",
"owner":{
"id":"286c0fbb0cb644c4a012d505b8a0a1ac",
"org_id":"c064890612424e34a12fca98ce4f32c6"
},
"name":"Android.SauceLabs.Mobile.Sample.app.2.3.0.apk",
"upload_timestamp":1593450387,
"etag":"0cf189b1c4c17a56656ada5e2d75cd51",
"kind":"android",
"group_id":2807,
"metadata":{
"identifier":"com.swaglabsmobileapp",
"name":"Swag Labs Mobile App",
"version":"2.3.0",
"icon":"<long-serial-number>",
"version_code":13,
"min_sdk":16,
"target_sdk":28
},
...
}
}
}

Then the file_id would be "id":"379c301a-199c-4b40-ad45-4a95e5f30a3a". If you're unsure of the id of an existing app, you can use the Storage API to lookup the ID of an app in storage or look into the apps details in the Sauce UI.

File Name instead of File ID

You can also use the app name field from the storage API in the app capability. This approach is particularly useful if you uploaded your build to app storage via a CI pipeline, and you either don't know the id, or you do not wish to perform JSON parsing in order to retrieve the id. The filename field also includes any supported file that can be uploaded to app storage.

Example of uploading an Android .apk file:

caps.setCapability("app", "storage:filename=<file-name>.apk");

Limitations

  • File names are NOT unique, therefore they will always default to the latest version.
  • Currently you cannot specify the version of the app using this feature.
  • build capability not supported in VDC at this time.

Updating WebDriver Capabilities

If you were previously using app stored in sauce-storage, you can convert your existing test capabilities by replacing sauce-storage:myapp with storage:<file_id>.

Example Code

These examples assume file_id = c8511dd6-38ec-4f58-b8b9-4ec8c23ad882

Before:

caps.setCapability("app", "sauce-storage:some-app.apk");

After:

caps.setCapability("app", "storage:c8511dd6-38ec-4f58-b8b9-4ec8c23ad882");

Using Dependent Apps for a Test

Real Devices Only

If your real device testing requires your app under test to have access to other apps and you, therefore, need to install those dependent apps and reference them in your tests, you can do so using the otherApps capability.

note

Dependent apps inherit the configuration of the main app under test for Device Language, Device Orientation, and Proxy, regardless of what settings may have been applied to the app at the time of upload, because the settings are specific to the device under test. For example, if the dependent app is intended to run in landscape orientation, but the main app is set to portrait, the dependent app will run in portrait for the test, which may have unintended consequences.

Appium Capability

For Appium tests, you can specify up to seven apps that have already been uploaded to App Storage using one of the previously described methods by setting the otherApps desired capability and referencing the app's storage ID or filename.

caps.setCapability("otherApps", "storage:filename=<file-name>")
caps.setCapability("otherApps", "storage:<fileId>")
note
  • Android dependent apps will not be instrumented or modified.
  • iOS dependent apps will always be resigned/modified (even when resigning is disabled for the main app) because apps can't be installed on iOS devices without resigning them. If a dependent app cannot be resigned (such as a 3rd party app), the test will not work as intended.

Espresso/XCUITest Configuration

For Espresso or XCUITest testing, you can specify up to seven dependent apps to either upload from your local machine or that are already in App Storage. In your saucectl configuration file, specify a local filepath (relative location is {project-root}/apps/app1.apk) or an expanded environment variable representing the path, and saucectl will upload the app to App Storage for use with the test. Otherwise, specify an app in App Storage using the reference storage:<fileId> or storage:filename=<filename>.

espresso:
otherApps:
- ./apps/pre-installed-app1.apk
- $PRE_INSTALLED_APP2
- storage:c78ec45e-ea3e-ac6a-b094-00364171addb
- storage:filename=pre-installed-app3.apk