Message Reference

Feature and usage reference for Airship messages.

See also:

Channel Registration Requirements

This table represents the minimum requirements for communicating with the various channels supported by Airship. A channel must either have installed the SDK or be registered via the API.

Channel TypeAPI RegistrationSDK Registration
Open Channel

API Equivalents

Additional API equivalents are noted in the various tables in this document.


Message TypeAPI Object
Push Notification"notification": {}
Web Push Notification"notification": { "web": {}}
In-App Message"in_app": {} 1
Message Center"message": {}
Apple News NotificationNot supported
Email Notification"notification": { "email": {}}
SMS Notification"notification": { "sms": {}}

1. There is currently no API for in-app automation.


A composer is a tool for creating messages via the dashboard. See Message and Composer Types for definitions of each and to learn which message types can be used with each composer and API endpoint.

Composer TypeAPI Endpoint
A/B Test/experiments
In-App AutomationNot supported
JourneyNot supported
Apple NewsNot supported

Optional Features

These apply to the composer Optional Features only. Also refer to their entries in the API Platform Overrides documentation. For Start and End Dates, see the API Automation documentation. For Campaign CategoriesAn optional delivery feature used to group messages of similar types or messaging strategies for aggregate reporting. Campaigns help you track the efficacy of both your individual messages and a messaging campaign as a whole. , see the API Campaign Object documentation.

Composer OptionAPI
Background Processing1,2content_available
Campaign Categories
Collapse Key (Amazon)consolidation_key
Collapse Key (Android)collapse_key
Custom Keysextra
Delay While Idle3delay_while_idle
Delivery Priority3delivery_priority
Media (iOS)media_attachment
Media (Android and Amazon)style
Mutable Content1,2mutable_content
Notification Category3notification_channel
Require Interaction4require_interaction
Start and End Dates1activation_time, deactivation_time

1. Used with automation and journeys only.
2. iOS only.
3. Android only.
4. Web only.

Availability: Channels Per Composer Type

Composer TypeChannels
Message, Automation, Journey, and A/B Test
  • App
  • Web
  • SMS
  • Email
  • Open Channels
In-App Automation
  • App
Apple News
  • Apple News app

Display Format and Timing

Delivery applies to message types and their equivalent API objects.

Message TypeDisplay FormatDisplay Timing
Push NotificationBannerUpon receipt.
Silent Push NotificationNoneNot displayed.
Web Push NotificationBannerUpon receipt, as long as the browser is open.
In-App MessageBanner, modal, or fullscreenUpon opening the app.
Message CenterFullscreenAvailable in the app’s Message Center.
Apple News NotificationBannerUpon receipt. If the selected story is still processing, it will send when the story is live.
Email NotificationTemplate layout, HTML, or plain-textUpon opening the message.
SMS NotificationTextUpon receipt.

Messages Per Composer Type

Available message types per composer type and their equivalent API endpoints.

  • Silent Push Notifications and Apple News Notifications cannot be combined with any other message types.
  • Upload Users (Create and Send in the API) can only be used with a single channel at a time.
Composer TypeMessage Type
Message, Automation, and Journey
  • Push Notification
  • Silent Push Notification
  • Web Push Notification
  • In-App Message
  • Message Center
  • SMS Notification
  • Email Notification
A/B Test
  • Push Notification
  • Web Push Notification
  • In-App Message
  • SMS Notification
  • Email Notification
In-App Automation
  • In-App Message
Apple News
  • Apple News Notification

Composers Per Message Type

Available composers per message type.

Message TypeComposer Types
Push Notification
  • Message
  • A/B Test
  • Automation
  • Journey
Silent Push Notification
  • Message
  • Automation
  • Journey
Web Push Notification
  • Message
  • A/B Test
  • Automation
  • Journey
In-App Message
  • Message
  • A/B Test
  • Automation
  • Journey
  • In-App Automation
Message Center
  • Message
  • Automation
  • Journey
Apple News Notification
  • Apple News
Email Notification
  • Message
  • A/B Test
  • Automation
  • Journey
SMS Notification
  • Message
  • A/B Test
  • Automation
  • Journey


Message actions apply to the Message, A/B Test, Automation, and Journey composers and their equivalent API endpoints. They are related to these message types only:

  • Push Notification
  • Web Push Notification
  • In-App Message
  • Message Center

The In-App Automation composer has the same button actions available in every message.


Available message actions depending on selected message types. Combining all three message types gives you the same available actions as Push Notification + In-App Message.

Message ActionAPI ObjectPush Notification

(with or without Message Center)

In-App Message

(with or without Message Center)

Push Notification + In-App MessageMessage Center
Message Center112
Landing Page1open3
Deep Linkopen4
Adaptive Linkopen5
Web Pageopen5

1. When Message Center is combined with another message type, the Actions dropdown menu defaults to Message Center, but you may choose another action.
2. When Message Center is the only selected message type, the Actions dropdown menu is replaced by a Rich Page create button.
3. With type property landing_page.
4. With type property deep_link.
5. With type property url.


Web actions are Home, Adaptive Link, and Web Page.

Rich Pages

Rich Pages can be configured with buttons that perform these actions:

  • Deep Link
  • URL
  • Share

Configuration and Requirements

Actions that do not require configuration cannot be disabled from appearing in the dashboard, and do not have a minimum SDK:

  • Home

Actions that require configuration, can be disabled from appearing in the dashboard, and have a minimum SDK:

  • Message Center
  • Landing Page
  • Deep Link
  • Adaptive Link
  • Web Page (URL)

The minimum SDK version is listed in Settings » Configuration » Feature Settings, along with an enable/disable toggle. The Adaptive Link action is enabled via the UA Actions Framework.

The Share action is an exception. It requires configuration, cannot be disabled from appearing in the dashboard, and its minimum SDK is 4.0.


Delivery applies to composers and their equivalent API endpoints.

  • The In-App Automation composer does not have delivery settings. The messages are instead stored on the user’s device then displayed according to the triggers you define.

Equivalent API endpoints are noted.

Composer TypeImmediateScheduled1Optimal Send Time2During Available Window
A/B Test/experiments/experiments
In-App Automation
Apple News

1. Scheduled messages must contain a schedule object.
2. Optimal Send Time is one of our predictive features. Please contact Airship Sales to purchase.
3. In the API, Optimal Send Time uses the schedule specification best_time.
4. See: Automation Timing.
5. Delivery type applies to the first message in a journey only. Subsequent messages in the journey are sent as additional conditions are met and according to their specified delay periods.
6. If the selected story is still processing, it will send when the story is live.

Automation Timing

Composer OptionAPI Object
Delaydelay object with seconds property
Scheduledate object with start and end properties
Send during available windowdate object with recent property