by Melih Yumak

How to set up React Native authentication with react-native-app-auth

Photo by CMDR Shane on Unsplash


Before we start, make sure you have the following versions installed:

“react”: “16.8.3”,
“react-native”: “0.59.1”,
“react-native-contacts”: “3.1.5”,

Here’s the link to the Github repo if you want to check it out:

React-native-app-auth is used to provide authentication in your react-native applications. In my case, I was trying to use it with Google, so here is an explanation how you can install and use it for the versions above.

In their documentation it’s also explained as a React Native bridge for AppAuth-iOS and AppAuth-Android SDKS for communicating with OAuth 2.0 and OpenID Connect providers.

Tested OpenID providers:

These providers are OpenID compliant, which means you can use autodiscovery:

Tested OAuth2 providers:

These providers implement the OAuth2 spec, but are not OpenID providers, which means you must configure the authorization and token endpoints yourself.


npm install react-native-app-auth --savereact-native link react-native-app-auth

In the documentation, there are three ways to implement this state but I prefer CocoaPods.

If you are using CocoaPods for the first time, please complete the steps below:

sudo gem install cocoapods

From your root folder open

cd ios
pod init

The pod init command will initialise the Podfile in your iOS directory.

Then add this line below in your Podfile after target ‘your_app’ do

pod 'AppAuth', '0.95.0'

Register redirect URL scheme

If you intend to support iOS 10 and older, you need to define the supported redirect URL schemes in your Info.plist as follows:

Note: you will get these values from oauth provider.
For google:

<key>CFBundleURLTypes</key><array>  <dict>    <key>CFBundleURLName</key>    <string></string>    <key>CFBundleURLSchemes</key>    <array>      <string>io.identityserver.demo</string>    </array>  </dict></array>
  • CFBundleURLName is any globally unique string. A common practice is to use your app identifier.
  • CFBundleURLSchemes is an array of URL schemes your app needs to handle. The scheme is the beginning of your OAuth Redirect URL, up to the scheme separator (:) character.

Define openURL callback in AppDelegate

You need to retain the auth session in order to continue the authorization flow from the redirect. Follow these steps:

Make AppDelegate conform to RNAppAuthAuthorizationFlowManager with the following changes to AppDelegate.h:

+ #import "RNAppAuthAuthorizationFlowManager.h"
- @interface AppDelegate : UIResponder <UIApplicationDelegate>+ @interface AppDelegate : UIResponder <UIApplicationDelegate, RNAppAuthAuthorizationFlowManager>
+ @property(nonatomic, weak)id<RNAppAuthAuthorizationFlowManagerDelegate>authorizationFlowManagerDelegate;

Change the following method from UIApplicationDelegate in AppDelegate.m:

- (BOOL)application:(UIApplication *)app openURL:(NSURL *)url options:(NSDictionary<NSString *, id> *)options { return [self.authorizationFlowManagerDelegate resumeExternalUserAgentFlowWithURL:url];}


After successful linking you should add android/app/build.grandle file defaultConfig value as your identifiers redirect url.

manifestPlaceholders = [
appAuthRedirectScheme: “io.identityserver.demo”


import { authorize } from 'react-native-app-auth';
// base configconst config = {  issuer: '<YOUR_ISSUER_URL>',  clientId: '<YOUR_CLIENT_ID>',  redirectUrl: '<YOUR_REDIRECT_URL>',  scopes: ['<YOUR_SCOPES_ARRAY>'],};
// use the client to make the auth request and receive the authStatetry {  const result = await authorize(config);  // result includes accessToken, accessTokenExpirationDate and refreshToken} catch (error) {  console.log(error);}

Happy Coding!

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