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Important Update

If you were/are using 1.0.0 or 1.0.1 please upgrade to 1.0.2, it fixes a major bug where messages were not sending.

SNS Mobile Push

Module to make interacting with mobile push notifications for iOS and Android easier. Wraps the Amazon aws-sdk node module. The idea is that you can create an object to represent each Platform Application you plan to use and remove the excess features that aren't needed for Android and iOS applications.


npm install sns-mobile

Setting Up a User for SNS

To use Amazon SNS you need a Secret Access Key and an Access Key Id. Getting these will require you to create a user under the IAM section of AWS and attach a User Policy with the following Policy Document:

Disclaimer: I'm not an AWS ninja, this configuration may be too liberal but it works!

  "Version": "2012-10-17",
  "Statement": [
      "Sid": "AccessToSNS",
      "Effect": "Allow",
      "Action": [
      "Resource": [

Simple Code Example for Android

The below example creates an SNS instance for an Android application identified by a PlatformApplicationArn.

var SNS = require('sns-mobile'),
var SNS_KEY_ID = process.env['SNS_KEY_ID'],
  SNS_ACCESS_KEY = process.env['SNS_ACCESS_KEY'],
  ANDROID_ARN = process.env['SNS_ANDROID_ARN'];
var androidApp = new SNS({
  region: 'eu-west-1',
  apiVersion: '2010-03-31',
  accessKeyId: SNS_ACCESS_KEY,
  secretAccessKey: SNS_KEY_ID,
  platformApplicationArn: ANDROID_ARN,
  //sandbox: true (This is required for targetting (iOS) APNS_SANDBOX only) 
// Add a user, the endpointArn is their unique id 
// endpointArn is required to send messages to the device 
androidApp.addUser('some_fake_deviceid_that_i_made_up', JSON.stringify({
  some: 'extra data'
}), function(err, endpointArn) {
  if(err) {
    throw err;
  // Send a simple String or data to the client 
  androidApp.sendMessage(enpointArn, 'Hi There!', function(err, messageId) {
    if(err) {
      throw err;
    console.log('Message sent, ID was: ' + messageId);

Running Tests

SNS_KEY_ID="<your_sns_key_id>" SNS_ACCESS_KEY="<your_sns_access_key>" SNS_ANDROID_ARN="arn:aws:sns:..." npm test

Events Emitted

Instances created will emit events as listed below and callbacks should have the shown format. Event strings can be accessed as shown below.

var SNS = require('sns-mobile'),
var myApp = new SNS({
  region: 'eu-west-1',
  apiVersion: '2010-03-31',
  accessKeyId: SNS_ACCESS_KEY,
  secretAccessKey: SNS_KEY_ID,
  platformApplicationArn: ANDROID_ARN
  // sandbox: true/false (If we're targetting Apple dev/live APNS)
myApp.on(EVENTS.USER_ADDED, function(endpointArn, deviceId){
    // Save user details to a db


function () {}

Emitted prior to broadcasting the first message.


function () {}

Emitted once all messages are broadcast.


function (endpointArn, res.MessageId) {}

Emitted when a message sends successfully.


function (endpointArn) {}

When a user is deleted this is emitted.


function (endpointArn, err) {}

If a message fails to send this is emitted.


function(deviceToken, err)

Fired when adding a user fails.


function (endpointArn, deviceId) {}

When a user is added this is emitted.


function (endpointArn, err) {}

If updating the attributes for an endpoint fails this is emitted.


function (endpointArn, attributes) {}

When an endpoint's attributes are updated this is emitted.


function (topicArn, topicName) {}

Emitted when a topic has been created successfully.


function (topicName) {}

Emitted when an attempt to create a topic has failed.


function (topicArn) {}

Emitted when a topic has been deleted successfully.


function (topicArn) {}

Emitted when an attempt to delete a topic has failed.


function (subscriptionArn, endpointArn, topicArn) {}

Emitted when an endpoint has been subscribed to a topic successfully.


function (endpointArn, topicArn, err) {}

Emitted when an attempt to subscribe an endpoint to a topic has failed.


function (subscriptionArn) {}

Emitted when an endpoint has been unsubscribed from a topic successfully.


function (subscriptionArn, err) {}

Emitted when an attempt to unsubscribe an endpoint from a topic has failed.


function (topicArn, messageId) {}

Emitted when a message has been published to a topic successfully.


function (topicArn, err) {}

Emitted when an attempt to publish a message to a topic has failed.



Expects an object with the following params:

  • platform: Supply any of the platforms in SNS.SUPPORTED_PLATFORMS
  • region: The Amazon region e.g 'eu-west-1'
  • apiVersion: Amazon API version, I have only used '2010-03-31'
  • accessKeyId: Amazon user Access Key.
  • secretAccessKey: Amazon user Secret Access Key.
  • platformApplicationArn: The PlatformApplicationArn for the Platform Application the interface operates on.
  • sandbox: Set this to true to target the Apple APNS_SANDBOX environment with messages.


An object containing supported platforms. Available options are:



Returns the platformApplicationArn provided to the constructor.


Returns the region being used.


Returns apiVersion being used.


Get all Platform Applications. This will not allow you to interface with other PlatformApplications but may be useful to just get a list of you applications. Callback format callback(err, users)

getUser(endpointArn, callback)

Get a user via endpointArn. The callback(err, user) receives an Object containg Attributes for the user and the EndpointArn.


Get all users, this could take a while due to a potentially high number of requests required to get each page of users. The callback(err, users) receives an Array containing users.


Get all topics by paging through them. The callback(err, topics) receives an Array containing topic objects.

getSubscriptions(topicArn, callback)

Get all subscriptions for the topic with the given topicArn by paging through them. The callback(err, subscriptions) receives an Array containing subscription objects.

addUser(deviceToken, [data], callback)

Add a device/user to SNS with optional extra data. Callback has format fn(err, endpointArn).

createTopic(name, callback)

Create a new topic with the given name. The callback has the format fn(err, topicArn).

setAttributes(endpointArn, attributes, callback)

Update an existing endpoint's attributes. Attributes is an object with the following optional properties:

  • CustomUserData: <object|string>
  • Enabled:
  • Token:

Callback has format fn(err, endpointArn).

deleteUser(endpointArn, callback)

Delete a user from SNS. Callback has format callback(err)

deleteTopic(topicArn, callback)

Delete the topic with the given topicArn. The callback has the format fn(err).

sendMessage(endpointArn, message, callback)

Send a message to a user. The message parameter can be a String, or an Object with the formats below. The callback format is callback(err, messageId).

subscribe(endpointArn, topicArn, callback)

Subscribe an endpoint to a topic. The callback has the format fn(err, subscriptionArn).

unsubscribe(subscriptionArn, callback)

Unsubscribe an endpoint from a topic via the given subscriptionArn. The callback has the format fn(err).

publishToTopic(topicArn, message, callback)

Publish a message a topic. The callback has the format fn(err, messageId). Please note that the message must be in the final Amazon SNS format as specified here, i.e. it must contain a key called default and platform-specific messages must already be JSON-stringified. Example:

  "default": "Default message which must be present when publishing a message to a topic. Will only be used if a message is not present for one of the notification platforms.",
  "APNS": "{\"aps\":{\"alert\"\"Check out these awesome deals!\",\"url\":\"\"} }",
  "GCM":"{\"data\":{\"message\":\"Check out these awesome deals!\",\"url\":\"\"}}"

You can read about Amazon SNS message formats here.


  aps: {
    alert: message

Read more about APNS payload here.

Android & Kindle Fire:

  data: {
    message: message

Read more about GCM here and ADM here.

broadcastMessage(message, callback)

Send message to all users. May take some time with large sets of users as it has to page through users. Callback format is callback(err). If a single/mulitple messages fail to send the error will not be propogated/returned to the callback. To catch these errors use the sendFailed event.


Contrinbutions are very much welcome, just submit a PR with updated tests where applicable. Current tests run against the actual SNS service, which may not be ideal so feel free to mock that out if you like too ;)

Thanks to these awesome folks for contributions: