Mobile App Extension

The Mobile App Extension for UniversitySite expands on the capabilities of UniversitySite by providing the ability to customize the mobile app to match your branding and to promote app installation when visiting LearningSite using a mobile device.

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Introduction to Progressive Web Apps

In 2007, Apple announced that iPhone will run progressive web apps that look and behave like applications built into iPhone.  In 2015, Google coined the term “progressive web apps” to describe apps that leverage browser-based technology having the ease of deploying and maintaining websites.  In 2019, Microsoft released a progressive web app for Outlook, and Apple gave web apps the ability to leverage SAML-based Single-Sign-On.


You won’t find LearningSite’s progressive web app in the App Store.  Its settings can be customized in InstructorSite and deployed directly from LearningSite or using a mobile device management platform.

Promotion of App Installation

When visiting LearningSite with Safari on iPhone or iPad, users will be made aware of the option to install the mobile app as described below.  We are striving to design an approach to promote the installation of the app without being annoying about it.
  1. On LearningSite’s Home Page
    1. Installation instructions are displayed in a modal dialog the first time they visit the home page each day
    2. On each subsequent visit, the “Get the App!” balloon appears momentarily
  2. On other pages in LearningSite
    1. The Apple icon is displayed in the navigation bar, but the modal dialog is never displayed, and the balloon is never displayed


From Global Settings | Mobile App, you can change the app name and the app icon to match your branding.


  1. SAML-based SSO is available, so users will be prompted to supply their organization credentials instead of a UniversitySite specific password
  2. If not using SSO, Email based authentication is available in mobile Safari but is not available for the standalone mobile app because Apple does not support opening links to web apps.


  1. HTTPS is required
  2. Links inside the email will not open the standalone app because Apple does not support this capability for web apps.  Links inside the email will open the app in Safari, which provides the exact same user experience as the standalone app.
  3. When visiting LearningSite in Safari, it doesn’t know if you have installed the standalone app, and it cannot switch to the standalone app, so it will suggest installing the app even if you already have done so.  For this reason, LearningSite only suggests installing the app when you visit the home page; otherwise, it would get annoying.

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