iOS Notification Options

With the release of Apple’s iOS 12, Braze offers support for several of its features, including Notification Groups, Quiet Notifications/Provisional Authorization, and Critical Alerts.

Notification Groups

If you want to categorize your messages and group them in your user’s notification tray, you can utilize iOS’s Notification Groups feature through Braze.

Create your iOS push campaign, then look to the top of the composer. There, you’ll see a dropdown labeled Notification Groups.


From there, you can select any Notification Groups. If your notification group settings malfunction or you select None from the dropdown, the message will automatically send as normal to all defined users in the app group.

If you don’t have any Notification Groups listed here, you can add one using the iOS Thread ID. You will need one iOS Thread ID for every Notification Group you want to add. Then, add it to your Notification Groups by clicking Manage Notification Groups in the dropdown and filling out the required fields in the Manage iOS Push Notification Groups window that appears.


Summary Arguments and Categories

Summary Arguments

In addition to grouping notifications by Thread IDs, Apple allows you to edit the summaries that appear when notifications are grouped. Braze Users can specify the summary category, summary count, and summary argument when composing a push campaign using our tool.

Check the Alert Options box in the Push Composer.

Then, select summary-arg and summary-arg-count as keys and input those values in the corresponding column. If you do not set a value for summary-arg, it will default to 1.

Summary Categories

Summary Categories allow you to customize the entire summary that appears when notifications are grouped. You can create and apply multiple categories.

To use a category in your message, work with your developers to implement using the following example:

UNNotificationCategory *newsCategory = [UNNotificationCategory categoryWithIdentifier:@"news"
                                                      actions:@[likeAction, unlikeAction]
                                                      categorySummaryFormat:@"%u more news articles from %@"

Once this is set up on your app, use the summary category by checking the Notification Buttons box and selecting Enter Pre-registered iOS Category.

Then, input the summary category identifier that you set in your app.

Provisional Push Authentication & Quiet Notifications

Apple allows brands the option to send quiet push notifications to their users’ Notification Centers before they officially, explicitly opt-in, giving you a chance to demonstrate the value of your messages early. All you need to do is set up provisional push notifications in your app, then any user who has a provisional push token will receive your messages.

Unlike a traditional iOS push token, a provisional push token acts as a “trial pass” that allows brands to reach out to new users before they’ve seen and clicked Apple’s native push opt-in prompt. With this feature, your push notification will be delivered directly to your new user’s notification tray with the option to “Keep” or “Turn Off” future notifications. Instead of experiencing an “opt-in” journey, users will experience something more akin to an “opt-out” journey.

Whichever option the user chooses will add the appropriate token or subscription status to their Contact Settings (under the Engagement Tab in their user profile) (shown below).

User Profile Provisionally Authorized

You will be able to target your users based on whether they are provisionally authorized or not using our segmentation filters (shown below).

Provisionally Authorized Segment

Set Up Provisional Push Notifications

Braze allows you to register for Provisional Authentication by updating your code in your token registration snippet within your Braze iOS SDK implementation using the snippets below as an example (send these to your developers or ensure they implement provisional push authentication during the integration process).


var options: UNAuthorizationOptions = [.alert, .sound, .badge]
if #available(iOS 12.0, *) {
  options = UNAuthorizationOptions(rawValue: options.rawValue | UNAuthorizationOptions.provisional.rawValue)


UNUserNotificationCenter *center = [UNUserNotificationCenter currentNotificationCenter];
center.delegate = self;
UNAuthorizationOptions options = UNAuthorizationOptionAlert | UNAuthorizationOptionSound | UNAuthorizationOptionBadge;
if (@available(iOS 12.0, *)) {
    options = options | UNAuthorizationOptionProvisional;

Critical Alerts

Apple will allow some brands to send notifications that are considered extremely important, will ignore Do Not Disturb settings, and will always play a sound no matter the setting on a user’s device.

Brands must be approved by Apple to use Critical Alerts. Good candidates for this feature could be apps with medical and other health-related information, home security, and public safety features. You must do this before using the feature in Braze.

Users will still be able to turn off Critical Alerts on a per-app basis, separately from other notifications.

Braze will give you the ability to select Send Critical Alert under Alert Options in the iOS Push Composer, which will then allow you to specify the notification as a Critical Alert.

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