About messaging and communication

Communication is a critical part of social and messaging apps, and Android continues to evolve APIs and services to make the user experience more integrated and consistent. This page connects you to resources to both help you get started and level up your app experiences.

Know key Android messaging APIs and concepts

Because messaging is such a critical task for users, Android has created bespoke APIs that you should know about to help make messaging more integrated and efficient.

Make the most of Android's messaging surfaces

Android has a built-in concept of people and conversations that provides more surfaces for your app to interact with users. Examples of this include:

Receive messages in the background reliably

Firebase Cloud Messaging ensures messages are sent and received reliably, while minimizing the use of system resources, offering a robust backend for real-time 1:1 and group chats.

The full guide for receiving messages reliably includes detail on how to best handle real-time messages in the foreground, in the background, and how to enhance delivery reliability.

Level up your app

You'll want your app to support features that meet and surpass user expectations. Messaging often includes embedded media support, so you might want your app to include media capture and playback. Other ways to help your app stand out include:

  • Rich emoji support through the Emoji Picker
  • Support for rich content, including stickers and images through Android's Image Keyboard
  • Support for browsing and selecting user photos and videos, either local or in the cloud, using Android's built-in photo picker
  • Support for sharing text and media directly to other apps and contacts

See the full guide for features to consider to take your social and messaging experience to the next level, to help your app meet and surpass user expectations.