Send messages to multiple devices

To target a message to multiple devices, use Topic messaging. This feature allows you to send a message to multiple devices that have opted in to a particular topic.

This tutorial focuses on sending topic messages from your app server using the Admin SDK or REST API for FCM, and receiving and handling them in an android app. We'll cover message handling for both backgrounded and foregrounded apps. All the steps to achieve this are covered, from setup to verification.

Set up the SDK

This section may cover steps you already completed if you have set up an Android client app for FCM or worked through the steps to Send your First Message.

Before you begin

  • Install or update Android Studio to its latest version.

  • Make sure that your project meets these requirements:

    • Targets API level 19 (KitKat) or higher
    • Uses Android 4.4 or higher
    • Uses Jetpack (AndroidX), which includes meeting these version requirements:
      • com.android.tools.build:gradle v7.3.0 or later
      • compileSdkVersion 28 or later
  • Set up a physical device or use an emulator to run your app.
    Note that Firebase SDKs with a dependency on Google Play services require the device or emulator to have Google Play services installed.

  • Sign into Firebase using your Google account.

If you don't already have an Android project and just want to try out a Firebase product, you can download one of our quickstart samples.

Create a Firebase project

Before you can add Firebase to your Android app, you need to create a Firebase project to connect to your Android app. Visit Understand Firebase Projects to learn more about Firebase projects.

Register your app with Firebase

To use Firebase in your Android app, you need to register your app with your Firebase project. Registering your app is often called "adding" your app to your project.

  1. Go to the Firebase console.

  2. In the center of the project overview page, click the Android icon () or Add app to launch the setup workflow.

  3. Enter your app's package name in the Android package name field.

  4. (Optional) Enter other app information: App nickname and Debug signing certificate SHA-1.

  5. Click Register app.

Add a Firebase configuration file

  1. Download and then add the Firebase Android configuration file (google-services.json) to your app:

    1. Click Download google-services.json to obtain your Firebase Android config file.

    2. Move your config file into the module (app-level) root directory of your app.

  2. To make the values in your google-services.json config file accessible to Firebase SDKs, you need the Google services Gradle plugin (google-services).

    1. In your root-level (project-level) Gradle file (<project>/build.gradle.kts or <project>/build.gradle), add the Google services plugin as a dependency:

      Kotlin

      plugins {
        id("com.android.application") version "7.3.0" apply false
        // ...
      
        // Add the dependency for the Google services Gradle plugin
        id("com.google.gms.google-services") version "4.4.1" apply false
      }
      

      Groovy

      plugins {
        id 'com.android.application' version '7.3.0' apply false
        // ...
      
        // Add the dependency for the Google services Gradle plugin
        id 'com.google.gms.google-services' version '4.4.1' apply false
      }
      
    2. In your module (app-level) Gradle file (usually <project>/<app-module>/build.gradle.kts or <project>/<app-module>/build.gradle), add the Google services plugin:

      Kotlin

      plugins {
        id("com.android.application")
      
        // Add the Google services Gradle plugin
        id("com.google.gms.google-services")
        // ...
      }
      

      Groovy

      plugins {
        id 'com.android.application'
      
        // Add the Google services Gradle plugin
        id 'com.google.gms.google-services'
        // ...
      }
      

Add Firebase SDKs to your app

  1. In your module (app-level) Gradle file (usually <project>/<app-module>/build.gradle.kts or <project>/<app-module>/build.gradle), add the dependency for the Firebase Cloud Messaging library for Android. We recommend using the Firebase Android BoM to control library versioning.

    For an optimal experience with Firebase Cloud Messaging, we recommend enabling Google Analytics in your Firebase project and adding the Firebase SDK for Google Analytics to your app.

    dependencies {
        // Import the BoM for the Firebase platform
        implementation(platform("com.google.firebase:firebase-bom:32.7.3"))
    
        // Add the dependencies for the Firebase Cloud Messaging and Analytics libraries
        // When using the BoM, you don't specify versions in Firebase library dependencies
        implementation("com.google.firebase:firebase-messaging")
        implementation("com.google.firebase:firebase-analytics")
    }
    

    By using the Firebase Android BoM, your app will always use compatible versions of Firebase Android libraries.

    (Alternative)  Add Firebase library dependencies without using the BoM

    If you choose not to use the Firebase BoM, you must specify each Firebase library version in its dependency line.

    Note that if you use multiple Firebase libraries in your app, we strongly recommend using the BoM to manage library versions, which ensures that all versions are compatible.

    dependencies {
        // Add the dependencies for the Firebase Cloud Messaging and Analytics libraries
        // When NOT using the BoM, you must specify versions in Firebase library dependencies
        implementation("com.google.firebase:firebase-messaging:23.4.1")
        implementation("com.google.firebase:firebase-analytics:21.5.1")
    }
    
    Looking for a Kotlin-specific library module? Starting in October 2023 (Firebase BoM 32.5.0), both Kotlin and Java developers can depend on the main library module (for details, see the FAQ about this initiative).

  2. Sync your Android project with Gradle files.

Subscribe the client app to a topic

Client apps can subscribe to any existing topic, or they can create a new topic. When a client app subscribes to a new topic name (one that does not already exist for your Firebase project), a new topic of that name is created in FCM and any client can subsequently subscribe to it.

To subscribe to a topic, the client app calls Firebase Cloud Messaging subscribeToTopic() with the FCM topic name. This method returns a Task, which can be used by a completion listener to determine whether the subscription succeeded:

Kotlin+KTX

Firebase.messaging.subscribeToTopic("weather")
    .addOnCompleteListener { task ->
        var msg = "Subscribed"
        if (!task.isSuccessful) {
            msg = "Subscribe failed"
        }
        Log.d(TAG, msg)
        Toast.makeText(baseContext, msg, Toast.LENGTH_SHORT).show()
    }

Java

FirebaseMessaging.getInstance().subscribeToTopic("weather")
        .addOnCompleteListener(new OnCompleteListener<Void>() {
            @Override
            public void onComplete(@NonNull Task<Void> task) {
                String msg = "Subscribed";
                if (!task.isSuccessful()) {
                    msg = "Subscribe failed";
                }
                Log.d(TAG, msg);
                Toast.makeText(MainActivity.this, msg, Toast.LENGTH_SHORT).show();
            }
        });

To unsubscribe, the client app calls Firebase Cloud Messaging unsubscribeFromTopic() with the topic name.

Receive and handle topic messages

FCM delivers topic messages in the same way as other downstream messages.

To receive messages, use a service that extends FirebaseMessagingService. Your service should override the onMessageReceived and onDeletedMessages callbacks.

The time window for handling a message may be shorter than 20 seconds depending on delays incurred ahead of calling onMessageReceived, including OS delays, app startup time, the main thread being blocked by other operations, or previous onMessageReceived calls taking too long. After that time, various OS behaviors such as Android's process killing or Android O's background execution limits may interfere with your ability to complete your work.

onMessageReceived is provided for most message types, with the following exceptions:

  • Notification messages delivered when your app is in the background. In this case, the notification is delivered to the device’s system tray. A user tap on a notification opens the app launcher by default.

  • Messages with both notification and data payload, when received in the background. In this case, the notification is delivered to the device’s system tray, and the data payload is delivered in the extras of the intent of your launcher Activity.

In summary:

App state Notification Data Both
Foreground onMessageReceived onMessageReceived onMessageReceived
Background System tray onMessageReceived Notification: system tray
Data: in extras of the intent.
For more information about message types, see Notifications and data messages.

Edit the app manifest

To use FirebaseMessagingService, you need to add the following in your app manifest:

<service
    android:name=".java.MyFirebaseMessagingService"
    android:exported="false">
    <intent-filter>
        <action android:name="com.google.firebase.MESSAGING_EVENT" />
    </intent-filter>
</service>

Also, you're recommended to set default values to customize the appearance of notifications. You can specify a custom default icon and a custom default color that are applied whenever equivalent values are not set in the notification payload.

Add these lines inside the application tag to set the custom default icon and custom color:

<!-- Set custom default icon. This is used when no icon is set for incoming notification messages.
     See README(https://goo.gl/l4GJaQ) for more. -->
<meta-data
    android:name="com.google.firebase.messaging.default_notification_icon"
    android:resource="@drawable/ic_stat_ic_notification" />
<!-- Set color used with incoming notification messages. This is used when no color is set for the incoming
     notification message. See README(https://goo.gl/6BKBk7) for more. -->
<meta-data
    android:name="com.google.firebase.messaging.default_notification_color"
    android:resource="@color/colorAccent" />

Android displays the custom default icon for

  • All notification messages sent from the Notifications composer.
  • Any notification message that does not explicitly set the icon in the notification payload.

Android uses the custom default color for

  • All notification messages sent from the Notifications composer.
  • Any notification message that does not explicitly set the color in the notification payload.

If no custom default icon is set and no icon is set in the notification payload, Android displays the application icon rendered in white.

Override onMessageReceived

By overriding the method FirebaseMessagingService.onMessageReceived, you can perform actions based on the received RemoteMessage object and get the message data:

Kotlin+KTX

override fun onMessageReceived(remoteMessage: RemoteMessage) {
    // TODO(developer): Handle FCM messages here.
    // Not getting messages here? See why this may be: https://goo.gl/39bRNJ
    Log.d(TAG, "From: ${remoteMessage.from}")

    // Check if message contains a data payload.
    if (remoteMessage.data.isNotEmpty()) {
        Log.d(TAG, "Message data payload: ${remoteMessage.data}")

        // Check if data needs to be processed by long running job
        if (needsToBeScheduled()) {
            // For long-running tasks (10 seconds or more) use WorkManager.
            scheduleJob()
        } else {
            // Handle message within 10 seconds
            handleNow()
        }
    }

    // Check if message contains a notification payload.
    remoteMessage.notification?.let {
        Log.d(TAG, "Message Notification Body: ${it.body}")
    }

    // Also if you intend on generating your own notifications as a result of a received FCM
    // message, here is where that should be initiated. See sendNotification method below.
}

Java

@Override
public void onMessageReceived(RemoteMessage remoteMessage) {
    // TODO(developer): Handle FCM messages here.
    // Not getting messages here? See why this may be: https://goo.gl/39bRNJ
    Log.d(TAG, "From: " + remoteMessage.getFrom());

    // Check if message contains a data payload.
    if (remoteMessage.getData().size() > 0) {
        Log.d(TAG, "Message data payload: " + remoteMessage.getData());

        if (/* Check if data needs to be processed by long running job */ true) {
            // For long-running tasks (10 seconds or more) use WorkManager.
            scheduleJob();
        } else {
            // Handle message within 10 seconds
            handleNow();
        }

    }

    // Check if message contains a notification payload.
    if (remoteMessage.getNotification() != null) {
        Log.d(TAG, "Message Notification Body: " + remoteMessage.getNotification().getBody());
    }

    // Also if you intend on generating your own notifications as a result of a received FCM
    // message, here is where that should be initiated. See sendNotification method below.
}

Override onDeletedMessages

In some situations, FCM may not deliver a message. This occurs when there are too many messages (>100) pending for your app on a particular device at the time it connects or if the device hasn't connected to FCM in more than one month. In these cases, you may receive a callback to FirebaseMessagingService.onDeletedMessages() When the app instance receives this callback, it should perform a full sync with your app server. If you haven't sent a message to the app on that device within the last 4 weeks, FCM won't call onDeletedMessages().

Handle notification messages in a backgrounded app

When your app is in the background, Android directs notification messages to the system tray. A user tap on the notification opens the app launcher by default.

This includes messages that contain both notification and data payload (and all messages sent from the Notifications console). In these cases, the notification is delivered to the device's system tray, and the data payload is delivered in the extras of the intent of your launcher Activity.

For insight into message delivery to your app, see the FCM reporting dashboard, which records the number of messages sent and opened on Apple and Android devices, along with data for "impressions" (notifications seen by users) for Android apps.

Build send requests

After you have created a topic, either by subscribing client app instances to the topic on the client side or via the server API, you can send messages to the topic. If this is your first time building send requests for FCM, see the guide to your server environment and FCM for important background and setup information.

In your sending logic on the backend, specify the desired topic name as shown:

Node.js

// The topic name can be optionally prefixed with "/topics/".
const topic = 'highScores';

const message = {
  data: {
    score: '850',
    time: '2:45'
  },
  topic: topic
};

// Send a message to devices subscribed to the provided topic.
getMessaging().send(message)
  .then((response) => {
    // Response is a message ID string.
    console.log('Successfully sent message:', response);
  })
  .catch((error) => {
    console.log('Error sending message:', error);
  });

Java

// The topic name can be optionally prefixed with "/topics/".
String topic = "highScores";

// See documentation on defining a message payload.
Message message = Message.builder()
    .putData("score", "850")
    .putData("time", "2:45")
    .setTopic(topic)
    .build();

// Send a message to the devices subscribed to the provided topic.
String response = FirebaseMessaging.getInstance().send(message);
// Response is a message ID string.
System.out.println("Successfully sent message: " + response);

Python

# The topic name can be optionally prefixed with "/topics/".
topic = 'highScores'

# See documentation on defining a message payload.
message = messaging.Message(
    data={
        'score': '850',
        'time': '2:45',
    },
    topic=topic,
)

# Send a message to the devices subscribed to the provided topic.
response = messaging.send(message)
# Response is a message ID string.
print('Successfully sent message:', response)

Go

// The topic name can be optionally prefixed with "/topics/".
topic := "highScores"

// See documentation on defining a message payload.
message := &messaging.Message{
	Data: map[string]string{
		"score": "850",
		"time":  "2:45",
	},
	Topic: topic,
}

// Send a message to the devices subscribed to the provided topic.
response, err := client.Send(ctx, message)
if err != nil {
	log.Fatalln(err)
}
// Response is a message ID string.
fmt.Println("Successfully sent message:", response)

C#

// The topic name can be optionally prefixed with "/topics/".
var topic = "highScores";

// See documentation on defining a message payload.
var message = new Message()
{
    Data = new Dictionary<string, string>()
    {
        { "score", "850" },
        { "time", "2:45" },
    },
    Topic = topic,
};

// Send a message to the devices subscribed to the provided topic.
string response = await FirebaseMessaging.DefaultInstance.SendAsync(message);
// Response is a message ID string.
Console.WriteLine("Successfully sent message: " + response);

REST

POST https://fcm.googleapis.com/v1/projects/myproject-b5ae1/messages:send HTTP/1.1

Content-Type: application/json
Authorization: Bearer ya29.ElqKBGN2Ri_Uz...HnS_uNreA
{
  "message":{
    "topic" : "foo-bar",
    "notification" : {
      "body" : "This is a Firebase Cloud Messaging Topic Message!",
      "title" : "FCM Message"
      }
   }
}

cURL command:

curl -X POST -H "Authorization: Bearer ya29.ElqKBGN2Ri_Uz...HnS_uNreA" -H "Content-Type: application/json" -d '{
  "message": {
    "topic" : "foo-bar",
    "notification": {
      "body": "This is a Firebase Cloud Messaging Topic Message!",
      "title": "FCM Message"
    }
  }
}' https://fcm.googleapis.com/v1/projects/myproject-b5ae1/messages:send HTTP/1.1

To send a message to a combination of topics, specify a condition, which is a boolean expression that specifies the target topics. For example, the following condition will send messages to devices that are subscribed to TopicA and either TopicB or TopicC:

"'TopicA' in topics && ('TopicB' in topics || 'TopicC' in topics)"

FCM first evaluates any conditions in parentheses, and then evaluates the expression from left to right. In the above expression, a user subscribed to any single topic does not receive the message. Likewise, a user who does not subscribe to TopicA does not receive the message. These combinations do receive it:

  • TopicA and TopicB
  • TopicA and TopicC

You can include up to five topics in your conditional expression.

To send to a condition:

Node.js

// Define a condition which will send to devices which are subscribed
// to either the Google stock or the tech industry topics.
const condition = '\'stock-GOOG\' in topics || \'industry-tech\' in topics';

// See documentation on defining a message payload.
const message = {
  notification: {
    title: '$FooCorp up 1.43% on the day',
    body: '$FooCorp gained 11.80 points to close at 835.67, up 1.43% on the day.'
  },
  condition: condition
};

// Send a message to devices subscribed to the combination of topics
// specified by the provided condition.
getMessaging().send(message)
  .then((response) => {
    // Response is a message ID string.
    console.log('Successfully sent message:', response);
  })
  .catch((error) => {
    console.log('Error sending message:', error);
  });

Java

// Define a condition which will send to devices which are subscribed
// to either the Google stock or the tech industry topics.
String condition = "'stock-GOOG' in topics || 'industry-tech' in topics";

// See documentation on defining a message payload.
Message message = Message.builder()
    .setNotification(Notification.builder()
        .setTitle("$GOOG up 1.43% on the day")
        .setBody("$GOOG gained 11.80 points to close at 835.67, up 1.43% on the day.")
        .build())
    .setCondition(condition)
    .build();

// Send a message to devices subscribed to the combination of topics
// specified by the provided condition.
String response = FirebaseMessaging.getInstance().send(message);
// Response is a message ID string.
System.out.println("Successfully sent message: " + response);

Python

# Define a condition which will send to devices which are subscribed
# to either the Google stock or the tech industry topics.
condition = "'stock-GOOG' in topics || 'industry-tech' in topics"

# See documentation on defining a message payload.
message = messaging.Message(
    notification=messaging.Notification(
        title='$GOOG up 1.43% on the day',
        body='$GOOG gained 11.80 points to close at 835.67, up 1.43% on the day.',
    ),
    condition=condition,
)

# Send a message to devices subscribed to the combination of topics
# specified by the provided condition.
response = messaging.send(message)
# Response is a message ID string.
print('Successfully sent message:', response)

Go

// Define a condition which will send to devices which are subscribed
// to either the Google stock or the tech industry topics.
condition := "'stock-GOOG' in topics || 'industry-tech' in topics"

// See documentation on defining a message payload.
message := &messaging.Message{
	Data: map[string]string{
		"score": "850",
		"time":  "2:45",
	},
	Condition: condition,
}

// Send a message to devices subscribed to the combination of topics
// specified by the provided condition.
response, err := client.Send(ctx, message)
if err != nil {
	log.Fatalln(err)
}
// Response is a message ID string.
fmt.Println("Successfully sent message:", response)

C#

// Define a condition which will send to devices which are subscribed
// to either the Google stock or the tech industry topics.
var condition = "'stock-GOOG' in topics || 'industry-tech' in topics";

// See documentation on defining a message payload.
var message = new Message()
{
    Notification = new Notification()
    {
        Title = "$GOOG up 1.43% on the day",
        Body = "$GOOG gained 11.80 points to close at 835.67, up 1.43% on the day.",
    },
    Condition = condition,
};

// Send a message to devices subscribed to the combination of topics
// specified by the provided condition.
string response = await FirebaseMessaging.DefaultInstance.SendAsync(message);
// Response is a message ID string.
Console.WriteLine("Successfully sent message: " + response);

REST

POST https://fcm.googleapis.com/v1/projects/myproject-b5ae1/messages:send HTTP/1.1

Content-Type: application/json
Authorization: Bearer ya29.ElqKBGN2Ri_Uz...HnS_uNreA
{
   "message":{
    "condition": "'dogs' in topics || 'cats' in topics",
    "notification" : {
      "body" : "This is a Firebase Cloud Messaging Topic Message!",
      "title" : "FCM Message",
    }
  }
}

cURL command:

curl -X POST -H "Authorization: Bearer ya29.ElqKBGN2Ri_Uz...HnS_uNreA" -H "Content-Type: application/json" -d '{
  "notification": {
    "title": "FCM Message",
    "body": "This is a Firebase Cloud Messaging Topic Message!",
  },
  "condition": "'dogs' in topics || 'cats' in topics"
}' https://fcm.googleapis.com/v1/projects/myproject-b5ae1/messages:send HTTP/1.1

Next steps