Friday, April 6, 2018

Data Streaming vs. Push Notifications

When dealing with mobile apps, the difference between real-time data streaming and push notifications is not always clear to everybody. Let's try to delve into this topic.
  1. With data streaming, the server sends real-time data directly to the app, leveraging WebSockets and/or HTTP. This requires the app to be running and, with iOS, to be in foreground.
  2. With push notifications, the server sends messages to Google's and Apple's servers, which deliver them to the mobile devices. Notifications are received by the device even if the app that subscribed to them is not in foreground or is not even running.