How iOS 13 will affect apple push notification


Push notifications (Web & App) are one of the leading communications channels used by apps and browsers irrespective of the OS either iOS or Android for transactions, promotional, re-engagement and leveraging customer experience.


As Apple launched the first iPhone in 2007, the world saw a tectonic shift in the way people communicate. The mobile phones ceased to be the device only to make phone calls or send SMS.


Although there are smart devices available at that point, some of the features were brought to the mainstream that changed the mode of communication completely. However, when it comes to push notification as a marketing channel, we are not there yet.


Here, it should be prudent to remind you that push notifications were already present at the time when Apple introduced APNS (Apple Push Notification Services). Before iOS, Blackberry was already using it by the name of Push Services. However, you should also know that the Blackberry Push Services was used to show only the email alerts.


Now, you must be wondering about why we are going into the past, especially when iOS 13 is already launched. Well, let me tell you that there is a strong reason to look into these past events. Apple iOS 13 has introduced a few tweaks concerning the push notification services. Hence, unless you know the significant milestones related to the APNS of the past, grasping with the latest feature might prove a bit tough.


So, take a quick peek at the major developments related to the APNS to leverage them according to your marketing needs.

The Evolution of Apple Push Notification Services (APNS)

As mentioned earlier, Apple started its push notification service since iOS 3. The push notification by Blackberry before that was only for email. Although this made accessing and checking emails as soon as it arrives, it was Apple who took it to another dimension by introducing similar features for third-party apps.


Over the years, iOS has seen quite a few additions, modifications, refining of its push notification service feature. For example, iOS 5, released in 2011 introduced the concept of the notification center. iOS 8 started the support for notification panel third-party widgets. Besides this addition allowed users to view real-time information about weather, stocks, and more.


The last version or iOS 12 has significantly affected the performance of push notifications too. To make the device faster, Apple introduced a new feature that allowed the device to group all the notifications in the notification center.


Apple released the latest version of its OS – iOS 13 on September 19, 2019. Continuing with the tradition of developing the iOS and the app-environment, the device is expected to change the way to carry out push notification campaigns yet again.


As you can see, Apple has introduced and sometimes changed the way push notifications are sent to the iPhones with a slew of development ever the years. iOS 13 brings in some changes, which are necessary to look at before tweaking your push notification campaign settings.

iOS 13 Features and Impact on Push Notification

With the recent update of iOS13 from Apple, Push notifications keep users informed with relevant information which is delivered on time, providing value for users and convertible actions for product owners.


Among a range of updates, Apple has once again enhanced a few features when it comes to push notifications with the release of iOS 13. Let’s see what are those and how impactful they will be when it comes to push notification.


1.  A separate OS for iPADs and iPhones

Apple will be discontinuing the support for iPads with its iOS 13. The iPads will be powered by another OS, built solely for it. This means you can no longer design the same message for the iPhone and iPad. However, this also means that the users you are targeting can become more segmented, as you only have to be concerned with the iPhone users on iOS 13.


2.  Enhanced privacy

As the trends of iOS had been regarding privacy, iOS 13 has taken a step further when it comes to push notifications. With iOS 13, the users will have more information about the data they need to share or the accessibility of the phone features. Further, the notification preferences, actions, visibility, and notification alerts have been modified by Apple to make the devices more user-friendly.


3.  Smart Notifications

The Apple push notifications on iOS 13 are set to become smarter with the new update. Thus, the users can now receive notifications curated according to their preferences from associated apps without asking for it explicitly & also Carousel Notifications with upto 6 products & its details to increase conversion rate. In other words, Apple intends to make the overall user experience more human-like for the users.

push notifications for ios

4.  New attributes for APNS API headers 

Since there has been a lot of changes in the way Apple push notification is going to work on iOS 13, the APNS APIs have changed too. The retrieval of the push token needs to be updated to a different format to access the description now onwards. 


You need to update the headers of the APNS payloads, too according to the type of push notifications. This is particularly important, as, without this update, the delivery of your push messages may get delayed. Lastly, you need to update the APNS priority settings under the requirement set by Apple. 


5.  More security

Along with the above four updates, Apple has also paid some attention to the security of the push notifications. Apple is discontinuing the support for the ancient TLSv1 protocol, and switching to a more secure http/2 protocol. Thus, you need to make sure that your platform is aware and adapted to this change in security protocol.


6.  Notification Service Extension

Apple has introduced this feature in iOS 13 to take off the push notification settings and VoIP notifications. This feature deals more with the permissions regarding the user data usage in the background. So, if you are looking to collect information about your users in the background, you must enable this service.

When you are looking to design your Apple push notification services according to the iOS 13, you must attend to all the features mentioned above. 


However, you must remember that your push notification might not reach the users still if they have turned off their notifications, which is very easy. As you know, when the users install your app, they must provide permission to allow push notification. These notifications can be switched on and off with a toggle from the settings screen. If the notifications are turned off, there is no way you can reach the intended users.

Ending Note

Since there are almost 22.5% iOS users globally, you must have a strategy ready for sending them push notifications and other marketing communications. However, over the last ten years, Apple has made quite some significant development. Unless you are keeping up with these updates, the chances are high that you will perish.


The latest version from Apple, the iOS 13 has concentrated more on security, user experience, and their privacy. You need to strategize your push notifications to comply with the latest APNS requirement. Moreover, the discontinuity of iOS support for the tabs would require you to cater to the iPads differently than iPhones now.


Although the task seems daunting, you have your work cut out if you are already using the push notification platform by Vizury. If not, you might reconsider shifting to it to avoid any unwanted loss of revenue that might occur due to the non-compatibility issues of your current platform with iOS 13. Get in touch with us at

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