App Center Push


For all the Android developers using App Center, there is a change coming where Firebase SDK is required to use Push Notifications. For Android P, its scheduled at the release date for the latest OS version. For all other versions of Android, it will be required after April 2019. Please follow the SDK migration guide.

App Center Push enables you to send push notifications to users of your app from the App Center portal. App Center portal and the Push SDK is integrated with Firebase Cloud Messaging.

Only devices with the Google Play Store application or emulators using Google APIs images can receive notifications.


A notification appears in the system notification center only if the application is in the background at the moment the Push is received.


1. Set up Firebase Cloud Messaging

  1. Create a project on the Firebase Console.
  2. Click the Android logo on the page to create an application matching your package name.
  3. Go to Project Settings and download the google-services.json file.
  4. Copy this file to your Android project app module.

2. Obtain your Android API Key

  1. In the Firebase Console, go to Project Settings.
  2. Navigate to the Cloud Messaging tab.
  3. Copy the Server Key. This will be the Android API Key that you will need to set in the App Center Push portal.

Add App Center Push to your app

Please follow the Get started section if you haven't set up and started the SDK in your application yet. The App Center SDK is designed with a modular approach – you can integrate only those services that you're interested in.

To add App Center Push to your app open a Terminal and navigate to the root of your Cordova project, then enter the following to add App Center Push to the app:

cordova plugin add cordova-plugin-appcenter-push

Please check out the Get started section if you haven't set up and started the SDK in your application yet.

Edit config.xml

Open the Apache Cordova project's config.xml file, and add google-services.json as resource-file inside platform android:

<platform name="android">
    <!-- Add this line -->
    <resource-file src="google-services.json" target="app/google-services.json" />

Intercept push notifications

You can set up a listener to be notified whenever a push notification is received in foreground or a background push notification has been clicked by the user.


A notification is not generated when your application receives a push in the foreground.


If the push is received in background, the event is NOT triggered at receive time. The event is triggered when you click on the notification.


The background notification click callback does NOT expose title and message. Title and message are only available in foreground pushes.

You need to register the listener when your app starts. A convenient place to do that is at app.onDeviceReady method of your project's js/index.js file:

var app = {

  onDeviceReady: function() {
    var onNotificationReceived = function(pushNotification) {
        var message = pushNotification.message;
        var title = pushNotification.title;

        if (message === null || message === undefined) {
            // Android messages received in the background don't include a message. On Android, that fact can be used to
            // check if the message was received in the background or foreground. For iOS the message is always present.
            title = 'Android background';
            message = '<empty>';

        // Custom name/value pairs set in the App Center web portal are in customProperties
        if (pushNotification.customProperties && Object.keys(pushNotification.customProperties).length > 0) {
            message += '\nCustom properties:\n' + JSON.stringify(pushNotification.customProperties);
        console.log(title, message);

    AppCenter.Push.addEventListener('notificationReceived', onNotificationReceived);    
    // ...



Custom data in your notifications

You can send optional custom data as part of the push payload. The data will be sent in the key-value format. This custom data can be intercepted in the app through Push SDK callback.

There are few reserved keywords that can be set via custom data. You can customize your notifications by setting custom color, icon or sound.


Android 5.0 and later uses a silhouette (only alpha channel) of your icon for notifications. See Android 5.0 Behavior Changes for details.

Reserved keywords in Android platform

  • color: The notification's icon color, expressed in #rrggbb format. Will be applied only on devices with Android 5.0 and later.
  • icon: The notification's icon. You should specify name of the icon resource. Supports drawable and mipmap types. If this value isn't specified application icon will be used.
  • sound: Add this key when you want the to play a sound when the device receives the notification. Supports default or the filename of a sound resource bundled in the app. Sound files must reside in /res/raw/. This is effective only for devices running or targeting an Android version lower than 8. Sound is set by default on Android 8 and user can change notification settings for the group of notifications coming from AppCenter.

Enable or disable App Center Push at runtime

You can enable and disable App Center Push at runtime. If you disable it, the SDK will stop updating the Google registration identifier used to push but the existing one will continue working. In other words, disabling the App Center Push in the SDK will NOT stop your application from receiving push notifications.

var enableSuccess = function() {
    console.log("push notifications enabled");

var disableSuccess = function() {
    console.log("push notifications disabled");

var error = function(error) {

AppCenter.Push.setEnabled(false, disableSuccess, error); // Disable push
AppCenter.Push.setEnabled(true, enableSuccess, error); // Re-enable it

The state is persisted in the device's storage across application launches.

Check if App Center Push is enabled

You can also check whether App Center Push is enabled:

var success = function(result) {
    console.log("push notifications " + (result) ? "enabled" : "disabled");

var error = function(error) {

AppCenter.Push.isEnabled(success, error);