Black screen in local build IOS app when using expo-dev-client - fresh install

This issue has been created since 2022-01-25.


When starting an app that uses expo-dev-client from the command line in an iOS simulator, the app opens to a black screen and never connects to the expo dev server. This does not happen if the app is opened by tapping its icon (e.g., not launched with a URL), and it does not happen if expo-dev-client is not installed.

This is a duplicate of #16008.

Managed or bare workflow? If you have made manual changes inside of the ios/ or android/ directories in your project, the answer is bare!


What platform(s) does this occur on?


Package versions


M1 Mac

  Expo CLI 5.0.3 environment info:
      OS: macOS 12.1
      Shell: 5.8 - /bin/zsh
      Node: 16.13.1 - ~/.local/share/asdf/installs/nodejs/16.13.1/bin/node
      Yarn: 1.22.15 - ~/.local/share/asdf/installs/nodejs/16.13.1/bin/yarn
      npm: 8.1.2 - ~/.local/share/asdf/plugins/nodejs/shims/npm
      Watchman: 2022.01.17.00 - /opt/homebrew/bin/watchman
      CocoaPods: 1.11.2 - /Users/jason/.local/share/asdf/installs/ruby/2.7.5/bin/pod
      iOS SDK:
        Platforms: DriverKit 21.2, iOS 15.2, macOS 12.1, tvOS 15.2, watchOS 8.3
      Android Studio: 2020.3 AI-203.7717.56.2031.7935034
      Xcode: 13.2.1/13C100 - /usr/bin/xcodebuild
      expo: ~44.0.0 => 44.0.5
      react: 17.0.1 => 17.0.1
      react-dom: 17.0.1 => 17.0.1
      react-native: 0.64.3 => 0.64.3
      react-native-web: 0.17.1 => 0.17.1
    Expo Workflow: bare

Reproducible demo

  1. expo init TestApp, choosing the 'blank' template
  2. cd into TestApp
  3. expo install expo-dev-client
  4. expo prebuild
  5. yarn ios

Stacktrace (if a crash is involved)

No response

jason0x43 wrote this answer on 2022-01-25

The issue only occurs when the app is loaded via a URL. If the app icon is tapped, the dev client launcher will appear, and tapping the URL of a running expo dev server will launch the app normally. If the app is launched via a URL (via yarn ios, by pressing i in the dev server window, or by entering the dev server URL in Safari in the simulator), the app will come up with a black screen and hang.

lukmccall wrote this answer on 2022-01-25

Hi @jason0x43, I'm able to reproduce described behavior and I'll try to fix that issue this week. Thanks for your report.

kennethlynne wrote this answer on 2022-02-02

We get the black screen whenever there is a deep link involved (opening via QR code or opening terminal shortcut). Opening via the recent server listing works. As a side note the OTA updates is also broken (app just crashes after update and reverts to the included bundle), but that might not be related (issue with expo-updates?).

I'm not on M1 just yet btw (I see the issue was confirmed on M1)

jason0x43 wrote this answer on 2022-02-02

I'm using OTA updates and haven't run into any issues (yet).

kennethlynne wrote this answer on 2022-02-02

Looks like the tests rely on ".only" now. I'd start looking there

cvburgess wrote this answer on 2022-02-02

Our team is also experiencing this issue, blocking our upgrade from 43 to 44 - please let me know if there's anything I can contribute!

brentvatne wrote this answer on 2022-02-02

@cvburgess - does [email protected] resolve the issue for you? it was released yesterday

jason0x43 wrote this answer on 2022-02-02

I just tested 0.8.3, and it does appear to have resolved the issue in my case.

kennethlynne wrote this answer on 2022-02-02

I can confirm that we now are able to open links again! However, we've seen sporadic crashes immediately after boot that we did not see previously.

colemerrick wrote this answer on 2022-02-03

Hello @brentvatne. I work with @cvburgess. [email protected] resolves our issue. Thank you!

DJ-Icebear wrote this answer on 2022-02-03

Hello! We ran in to the same thing this week, and still have this issue even after upgrading to [email protected].

A workaround for us is to first open the dev-client and then use the 'recently opened' URLs,
or use the "Enter URL manually" field and be sure to copy and paste the link into that field rather than actually clicking the link.

brentvatne wrote this answer on 2022-02-03

@DJ-Icebear - just to be sure - did you rebuild the dev client app after updating expo-dev-client to 0.8.3?

DJ-Icebear wrote this answer on 2022-02-04

@DJ-Icebear - just to be sure - did you rebuild the dev client app after updating expo-dev-client to 0.8.3?

Yessir - and our Pod Install logs include Installing expo-dev-client (0.8.3).
An Android build from the same source code does not have the same problem, only on iOS.

stdavis wrote this answer on 2022-03-02

I'm having the same issue at v0.8.4 as well...

fparhat-rbi wrote this answer on 2022-03-04

We are hitting this issue on expo-dev-client 0.8.4.
Specifically, when we launch our application via a deep link like <schema>://menu the development client launches on iOS but it results in a black screen quickly after launching.

  • No issues with Android URI links
  • No issue launching the app with URI links on iOS if the app is already running
esamelson wrote this answer on 2022-03-08

Could someone experiencing this issue post the contents of their AppDelegate.m file?

dlombardi wrote this answer on 2022-03-09

#import "AppDelegate.h"
// @generated begin react-native-maps-import - expo prebuild (DO NOT MODIFY) sync-f2f83125c99c0d74b42a2612947510c4e08c423a
#if __has_include(<GoogleMaps/GoogleMaps.h>)
#import <GoogleMaps/GoogleMaps.h>
// @generated end react-native-maps-import

#if defined(EX_DEV_MENU_ENABLED)
@import EXDevMenu;

#include <EXDevLauncher/EXDevLauncherController.h>
#import <EXUpdates/EXUpdatesDevLauncherController.h>

#import <React/RCTBridge.h>
#import <React/RCTBundleURLProvider.h>
#import <React/RCTRootView.h>
#import <React/RCTLinkingManager.h>
#import <React/RCTConvert.h>

#if defined(FB_SONARKIT_ENABLED) && __has_include(<FlipperKit/FlipperClient.h>)
#import <FlipperKit/FlipperClient.h>
#import <FlipperKitLayoutPlugin/FlipperKitLayoutPlugin.h>
#import <FlipperKitUserDefaultsPlugin/FKUserDefaultsPlugin.h>
#import <FlipperKitNetworkPlugin/FlipperKitNetworkPlugin.h>
#import <SKIOSNetworkPlugin/SKIOSNetworkAdapter.h>
#import <FlipperKitReactPlugin/FlipperKitReactPlugin.h>

static void InitializeFlipper(UIApplication *application) {
FlipperClient *client = [FlipperClient sharedClient];
SKDescriptorMapper *layoutDescriptorMapper = [[SKDescriptorMapper alloc] initWithDefaults];
[client addPlugin:[[FlipperKitLayoutPlugin alloc] initWithRootNode:application withDescriptorMapper:layoutDescriptorMapper]];
[client addPlugin:[[FKUserDefaultsPlugin alloc] initWithSuiteName:nil]];
[client addPlugin:[FlipperKitReactPlugin new]];
[client addPlugin:[[FlipperKitNetworkPlugin alloc] initWithNetworkAdapter:[SKIOSNetworkAdapter new]]];
[client start];

@implementation AppDelegate

  • (RCTBridge *)initializeReactNativeApp:(NSDictionary *)launchOptions
    // @generated begin react-native-maps-init - expo prebuild (DO NOT MODIFY) sync-3c18c06497a26c537c21be564d3413f397de92eb
    #if __has_include(<GoogleMaps/GoogleMaps.h>)
    [GMSServices provideAPIKey:@"AIzaSyDJxpdySna4G31QWCsQ4Z1uY65Kz2EJ3KU"];
    // @generated end react-native-maps-init
    RCTBridge *bridge = [self.reactDelegate createBridgeWithDelegate:self launchOptions:launchOptions];
    RCTRootView *rootView = [self.reactDelegate createRootViewWithBridge:bridge moduleName:@"main" initialProperties:nil];
    rootView.backgroundColor = [UIColor whiteColor];
    UIViewController *rootViewController = [self.reactDelegate createRootViewController];
    rootViewController.view = rootView;
    self.window.rootViewController = rootViewController;
    [self.window makeKeyAndVisible];

    return bridge;

  • (BOOL)application:(UIApplication *)application didFinishLaunchingWithOptions:(NSDictionary *)launchOptions
    #if defined(FB_SONARKIT_ENABLED) && __has_include(<FlipperKit/FlipperClient.h>)

    self.window = [[UIWindow alloc] initWithFrame:[UIScreen mainScreen].bounds];
    #if defined(EX_DEV_LAUNCHER_ENABLED)
    EXDevLauncherController *controller = [EXDevLauncherController sharedInstance];
    controller.updatesInterface = [EXUpdatesDevLauncherController sharedInstance];
    [controller startWithWindow:self.window delegate:(id)self launchOptions:launchOptions];
    [self initializeReactNativeApp:launchOptions];

    [super application:application didFinishLaunchingWithOptions:launchOptions];

    return YES;

  • (NSArray<id> *)extraModulesForBridge:(RCTBridge *)bridge
    // If you'd like to export some custom RCTBridgeModules, add them here!
    return @[];

  • (NSURL *)sourceURLForBridge:(RCTBridge *)bridge {
    #ifdef DEBUG
    #if defined(EX_DEV_LAUNCHER_ENABLED)
    return [[EXDevLauncherController sharedInstance] sourceUrl];
    return [[RCTBundleURLProvider sharedSettings] jsBundleURLForBundleRoot:@"index" fallbackResource:nil];
    return [[NSBundle mainBundle] URLForResource:@"main" withExtension:@"jsbundle"];

// Linking API

  • (BOOL)application:(UIApplication *)application openURL:(NSURL *)url options:(NSDictionary<UIApplicationOpenURLOptionsKey,id> *)options {
    #if defined(EX_DEV_LAUNCHER_ENABLED)
    if ([EXDevLauncherController.sharedInstance onDeepLink:url options:options]) {
    return true;
    return [super application:application openURL:url options:options] || [RCTLinkingManager application:application openURL:url options:options];

// Universal Links

  • (BOOL)application:(UIApplication *)application continueUserActivity:(nonnull NSUserActivity *)userActivity restorationHandler:(nonnull void (^)(NSArray<id> * _Nullable))restorationHandler {
    BOOL result = [RCTLinkingManager application:application continueUserActivity:userActivity restorationHandler:restorationHandler];
    return [super application:application continueUserActivity:userActivity restorationHandler:restorationHandler] || result;


@implementation AppDelegate (EXDevLauncherControllerDelegate)

  • (void)devLauncherController:(EXDevLauncherController *)developmentClientController
    developmentClientController.appBridge = [self initializeReactNativeApp:[EXDevLauncherController.sharedInstance getLaunchOptions]];


tiagotwistag wrote this answer on 2022-05-16

Hey, any updates on this? I'm using 0.8.5 on 44.0.6 and hitting the same issues

esamelson wrote this answer on 2022-05-18

Hi @tiagotwistag and everyone else still following - we believe this issue has been resolved in 0.9.x (which does require an upgrade to SDK 45), so I'd recommend upgrading when you have a chance.

More Details About Repo
Owner Name expo
Repo Name expo
Full Name expo/expo
Language C++
Created Date 2016-08-15
Updated Date 2022-09-28
Star Count 17590
Watcher Count 248
Fork Count 3541
Issue Count 494


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