Mobile Push Notifications


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Mobile: for push and sync. Goes through implementing push notifications with PHP on the various 4 major players: Android (C2DM), Apple (APNS), Windows Phone (MPNS), BlackBerry (maybe works?).

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Mobile Push Notifications

  1. 1. Mobile: Push forSync & Notifications By Mike Willbanks Software Engineering Manager CaringBridge
  2. 2. About Mike… • Software Engineering Manager at CaringBridge • Open Source Contributor • Organizer of MNPHP • Where you can find me:  Twitter: mwillbanks  G+: Mike Willbanks  IRC (freenode): lubs  Blog: http://blog.digitalstruct.com2
  3. 3. Agenda • Overview of Push Notifications • Android Push Notifications (C2DM) • Apple Push Notifications (APNS) • Microsoft Push Notifications • BlackBerry Push Notifications • Questions  Although you can bring them up at anytime!3
  4. 4. OverviewWhat are they?What is the benefit?High level; how do these things work?
  5. 5. What Are They • Push Notifications…  Are a message pushed to a central location and delivered to you.  Are (often) the same thing at a pub/sub model.  In the Mobile Space… • These messages often contain other technologies such as alerts, tiles, or raw data.5
  6. 6. In Pictures…6
  7. 7. Benefits of Push NotificationsThe benefits of push notifications are numerous; thequestion is if you have an app and you are running servicesto poll; why would you do such a thing!
  8. 8. One word… Battery Life8
  9. 9. Impact of Polling9
  10. 10. Battery Life • Push notification services for mobile are highly efficient; it runs in the device background and enables your application to receive the message. • The other part of this; if you implemented it otherwise you would be polling. This not only wastes precious battery but also wastes their bandwidth.  NOTE: This is not always true; if you are sending data to the phone more often than a poll would do in 15 minutes; you are better off implementing polling.10
  11. 11. Can We Deliver?11
  12. 12. Delivery • When you poll; things are generally 15+ minutes out to save on battery. In a push notification these happen almost instantly.  We’ve generally seen within 1-3s between sending a push notification to seeing it arrive on the device. • Additionally; push notifications can be sent to the device even if it is offline or turned off. • However, not all messages are guaranteed for delivery  You may hit quotas  Some notification servers only allow a single message to be in queue at 1 time (some group by collapse key), and others remove duplicates.12
  13. 13. How These Things WorkThe 10,000 foot view.
  14. 14. 10,000 Foot View of C2DM14
  15. 15. 10,000 Foot View of APNS15
  16. 16. 10,000 Foot View of Windows Push16
  17. 17. 10,000 Foot View of who?17
  18. 18. Oh, that’s right Blackberry!18
  19. 19. Walking Through AndroidUnderstanding C2DMAnatomy of a MessagePushing MessagesDisplaying Items on the Client
  20. 20. Understanding C2DM • It allows third-party application servers to send lightweight messages to their Android applications. • C2DM makes no guarantees about delivery or the order of messages. • An application on an Android device doesn’t need to be running to receive messages. • It does not provide any built-in user interface or other handling for message data. • It requires devices running Android 2.2 or higher that also have the Market application installed. • It uses an existing connection for Google services (Through the Google Market)20
  21. 21. Registering for C2DM • First things first – you must sign up to actually utilize C2DM   C2DM only works on Android w/ Google Market; if you use get a new Amazon Kindle Fire it would not work there. • We will be utilizing a library based on ZF 
  22. 22. Anatomy of the Mobile App22
  23. 23. How the Application Works • We must update the Manifest file to state additional permissions. • We will then create a broadcast receiver that will handle the messages and registration.23
  24. 24. Example Manifest24
  25. 25. Handling the Registration (or Unregistering) • Registration / Registration Updates and Unregistering. • Registration is generally on app start up. • Be nice and allow your users to unregister from the push notification service 25
  26. 26. Example Receiver More at: towards end of article.26
  27. 27. Implementing a Server • Enough Java already; it is a PHP conference! • Implementing the actual server is quick and pain free…  At least in my opinion (I did build this PHP implementation of C2DM) • Some limitations  200K messages per day by default; use them wisely however you may request more.  1K message payload maximum.  You must implement incremental back off.27
  28. 28. How the Server Works28
  29. 29. Using Zend_Service_Google_Gdata • Example is on GitHub:  Code was a little too large to attempt to fit it into a slide 29
  30. 30. Apple Push NotificationsA brief walk-through on implementing notifications on theiPhone.
  31. 31. Understanding APNS • The maximum size allowed for a notification payload is 256 bytes. • It allows third-party application servers to send lightweight messages to their iPhone/iPad applications. • Apple makes no guarantees about delivery or the order of messages. • An application on an iPhone/iPad device doesn’t need to be running to receive messages. • Message adheres to strict JSON but is abstracted away for us in how we will be using it today. • Messages should be sent in batches. • A feedback service must be listened to.31
  32. 32. Preparing to Implement Apple Push Notifications • You must create a SSL certificate and key from the provisioning portal • After this is completed the provisioning profile will need to be utilized for the application. • Lastly, you will need to install the certificate and key on the server.  In this case; you will be making a pem certificate.32
  33. 33. Anatomy of the Application33
  34. 34. How the Application Works • Registration  The application calls the registerForRemoteNotificationTypes: method.  The delegate implements the application:didRegisterForRemoteNotificationsWithDeviceToken: method to receive the device token.  It passes the device token to its provider as a non-object, binary value. • Notification  By default this just works based on the payload; for syncing you would implement this on the launch.34
  35. 35. Example of Handling Registration35
  36. 36. Example of Handling Remote Notification36
  37. 37. Implementing the Server • Phew, through the Objective C. • We will be leveraging APNS-PHP for this example as it encompasses everything you will need to be able to send notifications. •
  38. 38. How the Server Works38
  39. 39. Example APNS-PHP Server39
  40. 40. Example APNS-PHP Feedback Loop40
  41. 41. Microsoft Push NotificationsWell, I am not certain if they will find the market share yetbut hey; some people need to build apps for it!
  42. 42. Understanding MPNS • It allows third-party application servers to send lightweight messages to their Windows Mobile applications. • Microsoft makes no guarantees about delivery or the order of messages. (See a pattern yet?) • 3 types of messages: Tile, Toast or Raw • Limitations:  One push channel per app, 30 push channels per device, additional adherence in order to send messages  3K Payload, 1K Header •
  43. 43. Preparing to Implement MPNS • Upload a TLS certificate to Windows Marketplace  The Key-Usage value of the TLS certificate must be set to include client authentication.  The Root Certificate Authority (CA) of the certificate must be one of the CAs listed at: SSL Root Certificates for Windows Phone.  Stays authenticated for 4 months.  Set Service Name to the Common Name (CN) found in the certificates Subject value.  Install the TLS certificate on your web service and enable HTTP client authentication. • We will be using the following PHP class for this:  Certainly not the most beautiful code but it works.
  44. 44. Anatomy of MPNS44
  45. 45. Registering for Push45
  46. 46. Implementing the Callbacks for Notifications46
  47. 47. Implementing the Server • Real easy, real fast and a simple class…  I’m not too fond on the code to repeat myself but it would be easy to clean up   • Pretty much nothing else left to do but show you the options!47
  48. 48. Example Implementing MPNS w/ PHP48
  49. 49. BlackBerry Push NotificationsAre these even going to be needed in another year?
  50. 50. Understanding BlackBerry Push • It allows third-party application servers to send lightweight messages to their BlackBerry applications. • Allows a whopping 8K or the payload • Uses WAP PAP 2.2 as the protocol • Mileage may vary…  Only a sample php push server has ever been published.  Looks to be mainly for the Browser:
  51. 51. Anatomy of BB Push51
  52. 52. Application Code • They have a “Sample” but it is deep within their Push SDK. Many of which are pre-compiled.  Documentation is hard to follow and the sample isn’t exactly straight forward: • Install the SDK then go to BPSS/pushsdk-low-level/sample-push- enabled-app/ and unzip sample-push-enabled-app- • You will see several areas to get the push notifications going… Let’s take a look.52
  53. 53. Preparing to Implement • You need to register with BlackBerry and have all of the application details ready to go:  • Download the PHP library:  Updated to be OO; non-tested and a bit sloppy:  Original source:
  54. 54. Implementing BB Push w/ PHP • Be aware… this code is highly alpha – never been tested. • Let me know how it goes… Will be refactoring it and testing it in the future.54
  55. 55. Moving Forward • ZF 2  I am looking as time permits to contribute implementations of the 4 big players push notification implementations to Zend Framework. I am not sure when I will find the time but at some point… • BlackBerry  Who knows where they will end up. All I know is that developing for it seems painful and the documentation is certainly not what I would like to see.  There is a large need for a quality implementation but at the same point developers are not highly interested in their platform.55
  56. 56. Resources • Main Sites  Apple Push Notifications: ceptual/RemoteNotificationsPG/Introduction/Introduction.html  Google C2DM (Android):  Microsoft Push Notifications: us/library/ff402558(v=vs.92).aspx  BlackBerry Push Notifications: • Push Clients:  Apns-php:  ZF C2DM:  MS:  BlackBerry: • Might be broken but at least better than what I found anywhere else 56
  57. 57. Questions?Give me feedback: will be posted at later this afternoon.