Learn how to create development builds for a project.
If you are looking to create a development build locally, rather than remotely on EAS, you can create local builds with
npx expo run:[android|ios]or with
eas build --local.
In this guide, you'll find information on creating a development build with EAS and installing it on an emulator/simulator or a physical device to continue developing your app.
All you will need an React Native Android and/or iOS project that is configured to build with EAS Build. If you haven't configured your project yet, refer to the "Create your first build" page.
The following instructions cover both Android and iOS and physical devices and emulators. You can use whichever instructions are relevant to your project. If you would prefer a video over text, you can skip to "Video walkthroughs".
npx expo install expo-dev-client
Apps that don't use Continuous Native Generation will need to follow the "Install development builds in bare React Native" guide.
The first time you ran the
eas build command, it creates an eas.json file at the root of your project directory. The eas.json includes with three default build profiles —
production. If you have removed the
development profile since you first initialized eas.json, you should add it back now. A minimal configuration is shown below:
development profile sets the following options:
true to create a Debug build. It also generates a build artifact you can install on an Android device or emulator, or an iOS device with internal distribution.
iOS builds where
developmentClientis set to
trueon the build profile should always be distributed as
internal. If you are distributing for TestFlight, you have to set the distribution to
Follow the steps below to create and install the development build on an Android Emulator or an iOS Simulator.
This is only required if you want to develop a project on an emulator/simulator. Otherwise, skip these steps if you are using a device.
Each platform has specific instructions you'll have to follow:
To create and install the development build on an Android Emulator, you will need an .apk. To create it, run the following command:
eas build --profile development --platform android
After the build is complete, the CLI will prompt you to automatically download and install it on the Android Emulator. When prompted, press Y to directly install it on the emulator.
See Build APKs for Android Emulators and devices for more information.
To create and install a development build on an iOS Simulator, we recommend you create a separate build profile for the simulator and then set the
ios.simulator option to
true in the eas.json.
For example, the
development-simulator profile below is only for creating a development build for iOS Simulator:
Then, run the following command to create the development build on an iOS Simulator:
eas build --profile development-simulator --platform ios
After the build is complete, the CLI will prompt you to automatically download and install it on the iOS Simulator. When prompted, press Y to directly install it on the simulator.
See Installing build on the simulator for more information.
Follow the steps below to create and install the development build on an Android or an iOS device. Each platform has specific instructions you'll have to follow:
If you have created a development build for Android Emulator, you do not need to create it separately for the device. You can skip this step since the same .apk will work in both scenarios.
To create and install the development build on an Android device, you will need a .apk. To create it, run the following command:
eas build --profile development --platform android
After the build is complete, copy the URL to the .apk from the build details page or the link provided when
eas build has finished. Then, send that URL to your device and open it on your device to download and install the .apk.
Apple Developer membership is required to create and install a development build on an iOS device.
To register any iOS device you'd like to develop onto your ad hoc provisioning profile, run the following command:
After registering your iOS device, you can create the development build by running the command:
eas build --profile development --platform ios
Devices running iOS 16 and above require enabling a special OS-level Developer Mode to install development builds. If you don't have this setting enabled or are installing your first development build on your device, see iOS Developer Mode to enable it.
After the build is complete, you can download it on your iOS device by scanning the QR code from the device's camera from the Expo CLI. The QR code is provided when the
eas build command has finished running.
You can also find this QR code on the build page in the Expo dashboard. Click the Install button and scan the QR code using the system's camera.
A course on egghead.io that covers all of the information from this page, and more.
Learn how to make a development build with EAS Build in this video tutorial hosted by Developer Success Engineer: Keith Kurak.