What users are saying about

Amazon SNS

3 Ratings

Urban Airship

3 Ratings

Amazon SNS

3 Ratings
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Score 7.6 out of 101

Urban Airship

3 Ratings
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Score 9.6 out of 101

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Likelihood to Recommend

Amazon SNS

It is well suited for generic push notification requirements. It can be quickly created and modified to best suit your application at any given moment. However for any notification service that needs to be highly customizable for a specific deployment should be implemented through a competing or custom built service run on company servers
Dylan Cauwels profile photo

Urban Airship

It's well-suited when you want your content to get out quickly. It's best for breaking or big news. We do weigh what types of stories we want to push. We don't want to overuse it, but we want to take advantage. We don't find it appropriate using it between the hours of 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. We sent out a push one time around midnight, and we got a comment back that it woke somebody up and scared them.
Brian L. Clark profile photo

Pros

  • Super simple setup and deployment. You can have a new service set up within minutes and in a serverless environment as well
  • Well documented and incredibly easy to use. There are available APIs in almost every relevant language and are all well documented by AWS. Getting any team up to date on their new Notification architecture shouldn't take longer than a day.
  • Being managed by AWS themselves makes the service highly available in every possible way. Your SNS deployment is almost guaranteed to never go down without you ever lifting a finger to make it so.
Dylan Cauwels profile photo
  • It's very fast. As soon as we hit send, it arrives on our phone and tablet apps immediately.
  • The interface is clear. We generally copy and paste the headline right into the box. The font and font size, along with the background, make it easy to read so that we avoid any typos. That's important because we're working quickly.
  • It gives you good and usable analytics to track engagement.
  • It's 100 percent reliable. We've never had an issue with it.
Brian L. Clark profile photo

Cons

  • The AWS website UI could use some definite improvement. The website itself is very clunky and hard to navigate and always seems to have the wrong information in the wrong places. It is a monstrous task trying to make a website as complicated as AWS look simple and easy to navigate but even with some minor improvements it would become much more user and beginner friendly.
  • Troubleshooting can be very difficult when encountering an issue with SNS and often many AWS services. By having all of your infrastructure in the cloud, it makes troubleshooting networking problems quite complicated. On top of this, aws provides little return information when a message fails to send, leaving a lot of guesswork to be done on your part to fix the issue.
Dylan Cauwels profile photo
  • The interface can be a little confusing. In the upper right corner of your dashboard, you'll see "New Push Message" and "New Message" ... Seems odd to have two choices. Then, after you push "New Message" you can copy and paste your text, but then there are about three more buttons before you get to the point of sending it. That just might be how it's integrated with our app so other markets might be different. But, if you have the instructions, it's fairly quick.
  • Again, this could be just the way it's integrated with our app, but when a user clicks on the alert on their phones, it goes to the web site and not to the specific story. So, we have to make sure the story is in a prominent place on our site (Latest News, mainstage).
  • It would be nice to have small photos in our push notifications.
Brian L. Clark profile photo

Alternatives Considered

SNS is much more customizable compared to SES and allows for many more delivery methods. While it is better for email-based notification services, not being able to send notifications via SMS limits your app functionality considerably. Being able to switch message delivery types is an invaluable tool for any application deployment
Dylan Cauwels profile photo
There was a time when we went off Urban Airship and went to Spreed. We were using Spreed's app, so there was much better integration on push notifications. The push notification took readers directly into the story. When we moved from Spreed to our own native app, we went back to Urban Airship.
Brian L. Clark profile photo

Return on Investment

  • Positive from the cost savings of the service itself
  • Positive from the labor savings from both the ease of setup and learning curve of the programmers
Dylan Cauwels profile photo
  • It's had a positive impact on engagement.
  • It helps lend credibility to our product given that major sites like CNN, AP, ESPN, etc. have push notifications.
  • I have not come across any negative impacts.
Brian L. Clark profile photo

Pricing Details

Amazon SNS

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details

Urban Airship

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details