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Android > Device Data & Configuration

Android kiosk mode

Updated on October 31st, 2022

The kiosk mode is a lockdown method that administrators can use to dedicate Android devices for serving a specific use. With the kiosk mode, you can restrict the devices to a single application. But you can also give the users the possibility to access the device's home screen, settings, and a couple of predefined applications.

This article focuses on describing how you can lock an Android device to a single application. If you are interested in multi-app kiosk mode with more flexibility, read also Android kiosk mode with multiple applications.

Typical use cases

Many organizations use the kiosk mode on public-facing devices, for example, when gathering feedback from visitors at trade shows. Another use case could be the dedicated devices of employees, for example, in transport and logistics. The kiosk mode prevents people from using the devices for anything that's not allowed by the administrators, also making the devices less attractive targets to steal.

Requirements for the Kiosk mode

  • Miradore Premium plan.
  • You need to have an Administrator user role in Miradore.
  • The Miradore Client 2.8.0 or above.
  • The device must have Android version 9.0 or above.
  • The device has been enrolled to Miradore as a Fully managed device (Device owner mode).
  • Make sure you install the kiosk apps to your devices before you deploy the kiosk mode configuration profile to them.

How to set up Android devices to a single app Kiosk mode?

  1. Go to Management > Configuration profiles and add a new configuration profile (Android > Kiosk mode).
  2. Decide the application in which you want to lock the devices, find out the application's package name, and enter the package name in the Kiosk mode application field.

    Single app kiosk mode for Android
    You can check an application's package name from the Identifier column under the Applications tab on the Device page in Miradore.
  3. On the Features and System restrictions tab of the Kiosk mode configuration wizard, you can specify which device features or buttons are available to the device users and what actions the users can perform on the device. You can, for example, show or hide the system status bar, prevent the users from mounting any physical media to the device or disable factory reset. We recommend setting the restrictions for the Kiosk mode profile at this stage instead of deploying a separate restriction configuration profile.
  4. Enter a name and description for the profile and you're ready for the deployment.
  5. Before you deploy the kiosk mode configuration profile, make sure that the kiosk mode application already exists on the device(s). The deployment of the kiosk mode application will fail if the app does not exist on the device. If you need instructions for deploying the profile, please read Deploying a configuration profile.
  6. Some apps don't work in the kiosk mode and some apps may show a dialog to the user on the first run. Hence, we recommend testing the profile thoroughly on a few devices before deploying it to more devices. On the test devices, you should make sure that the kiosk app runs properly and that the user cannot leave the application or use the blocked features of the device.
  7. It is recommended to restart the device after the deployments and check that everything works properly. Reboot the device after the Kiosk mode deployment and also after the Kiosk application gets upgraded.
  8. You can only turn off the kiosk mode through the network from Miradore. It is important to ensure that the devices in Kiosk mode are always able to connect to the Internet.

Troubleshooting and Frequently asked questions

Answers to common questions and tips for troubleshooting issues with the single-app kiosk mode for Android.

How can I see if a device is in kiosk mode?

You can see kiosk mode deployment information from the Miradore Client > Kiosk mode field on the Main tab of the Device page.

Android kiosk enabled on Miradore.

Can I turn off the device in Kiosk mode?

When the device is in Kiosk mode and you try to turn it off it doesn't work. When you press the Power button for 10 seconds it will restart the device. The same happens when you try to force shut the device by pressing the Power button for 30 seconds. In order to shut down the device, you need to first exit the Kiosk mode. Please see Removing deployed configuration profiles for more instructions if needed. Once the deployment has been removed the device should automatically revert back to the normal state without the need for restarting.

How can I find the application package names?

If you already have a device enrolled in Miradore which has the application installed, you can check the application's package name from the Identifier column on the Applications tab of the Device page.

How can I allow the device to run background apps in addition to the kiosk app?

Although you would have locked a device into a single app, you can allow it to run multiple apps. To do this, you need to list the package names of the background apps in the Additional allowed apps field on the Kiosk mode configuration profile.

Can I run web apps in Kiosk mode?

Unfortunately, that is not possible. Miradore doesn't currently support running web apps or PWAs in Kiosk mode on Android devices.

What causes the deployment to fail?

If the application asked to run in kiosk mode is not installed on the device it will cause the deployment to fail as seen in the below screen capture where Google Maps has been chosen as the kiosk mode app on a Samsung device. In order to complete the deployment the app needs to be first installed on the system and then the kiosk mode re-deployed and the kiosk mode should start instantly without the need for re-starting the device. Please make sure you have typed in the application identifier correctly.

Google maps not found on the Samsung device.

The options in the status field are completed and queued (where the update could still be on its way) and failed, which appears in red.

Comparing the kiosk mode to the normal view

Below you can see the device with Google Maps running in the kiosk mode.

Google Maps running on Samsung in kiosk mode.

You can see it is missing in the default settings in the top menu with the time on the left and connection and battery information on the right. Also, the bottom menu is completely missing. You can amend these settings as explained earlier in this article.

Google Maps running on Samsung in normal mode.

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