Introduction to Visual Studio App Center

Hello Everyone, in this article, we are covering Visual Studio App Center services with complete guidelines of installation for Xamain iOS.

What is Visual Studio App Center?

Visual Studio App Center is the one-stop solution for all the different services like HockeyApp, Xamarin Test Cloud, Xamarin Insight, Azure Mobile Engagement, Azure App Service, Code Push etc, all of them seamlessly integrated to make the development and shipping of application much easier.

Platform Support:

  1. Android
  2. iOS
  3. UWP
  4. macOS (preview)

Framework Support:

  1.  JAVA
  2.  Objective C/ Swift
  3.  Xamarin
  4. React Native

Visual Studio App Center

Get Started with Microsoft App Center

1. Add NuGet packages to your solution

Search for “App Center”, and look for the following packages in the results:
If you are on Mac, select App Center Analytics, App Center Crashes and add both packages.
For Windows, install Microsoft.AppCenter.Analytics and Microsoft.AppCenter.Crashes packages.

If you use the App Center SDK in a portable project, you need to install the packages in both the portable and the iOS projects.

2. Start the SDK

Inside your app’s AppDelegate.cs, add the following using statements.

using Microsoft.AppCenter;
using Microsoft.AppCenter.Analytics;
using Microsoft.AppCenter.Crashes;

using Microsoft.AppCenter; using Microsoft.AppCenter.Analytics; using Microsoft.AppCenter.Crashes;
In the same file, add the following in the FinishedLaunching() method.

AppCenter.Start(“{Your Key}“,
typeof(Analytics), typeof(Crashes));
AppCenter.Start(“50bfef1f-8372-4ae2-b772-3bc9424e433a”, typeof(Analytics), typeof(Crashes));

3. Explore data

Now build and launch your app, then go to the Analytics section. You should see one active user and at least one session! The charts will get more relevant as you get more users. Once your app actually crashes, you will have Crashes data show up as well. You can look at the Troubleshooting section if you don’t see any data.

4. Use additional services

App Center’s distribution service enables your testers to get in-app updates when a new version of the app is available. To leverage the full power of distribution, add the distribute SDK Module to your application by following the steps from our distribute documentation. Your testers will be prompted with a dialog within the app that notifies them to update their current version to the latest release.
App Center’s push service enables you to send push notifications to users of your app from our portal. To use it, follow the steps from push documentation.

Note: Visual Studio app center is compatible with iOS Deployment target 9.0 or greater. Please change the deployment target in info.plist. WIth older deployment target you may get errors.



Create an installable app package automatically with every push to your repository. Supports GitHub, or Git repos on Bitbucket and Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS). No additional build hardware required


Run your tests on more than 400 unique device configurations. Tests can be written for iOS and Android apps with Xamarin.UITest, Appium, Espresso (Android), and XCUITest (iOS). Backed by Xamarin Test Cloud.


Users can install the app via email distribution lists for testing, much as they’d download an app from the app store.


Collect crashes from all devices, prioritize them based on the number of users seeing the crash, and get the full stack traces to help you fix them. Backed by HockeyApp


Get information about the number of daily, weekly, and monthly users, session duration, the top devices and more. Use events to collect rich behavioural analytics data.

Push Notifications

Engage your users by sending them targeted messages to specific sets of users at exactly the right time. Create segments of users based on device and custom properties.


Visual Studio App Center Pricing

Facing Error: Native linking failed, duplicate symbol:*?

Solution: It’s also possible to ask the linker directly to remove unused code by adding -gcc_flags -dead_strip to the additional mtouch arguments in the project’s iOS Build options.

Happy Coding!!

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