The Chat SDK is free and open source. The SDK is released under the Apache 2.0 license with the “Commons Clause” License Condition v1.0.
That provides all the freedom of the Apache license while adding a clause that would prevent big cloud companies from monetizing the project.
So if you give the code away for free, what's in it for you?
We offer consulting services and premium addons for the Chat SDK. The add-ons include things like: typing indicators, read receipts, video and audio messages etc... We give 90% of the chat functionality away for free and our customers are free to develop this functionality themselves if they wish. However, for a small licensing fee they can get robust well tested addons instantly.
Will the Chat SDK always be free and open source? If so, how long will it be supported?
The core Chat SDK will always be free and open source. We are planning to support the code until at least December 2022.
I want you to customize the code for me. How much will it cost?
We have a team ready to help you add the features you need. If you send us an email at [email protected] we will help you define a specification and then we'll provide a quote for the work.
How many users can Chat SDK support?
We have tested the Chat SDK with 300,000 daily users and it works perfectly. That's with over 2 million monthly users! Really, Firebase is the only limitation in terms of scaling and Firebase can support millions of daily users.
What's the Firebase database schema?
Firebase uses a no-SQL database so it doesn't have a predefined schema. As the app runs, it will generate the schema as it goes. The schema is very flexible - you can add extra custom data if you like. As long as you don't remove fields, the Chat SDK will run correctly. If you're interested in the schema you can check out the Firebase Schema Guide.
If the client defines the schema, how is the data secured?
Firebase includes a set of flexible security rules that help to secure the data. You can read more on the Firebase website and by looking at the rules.json file.