20 March, 2023
Real-time chat SDK

Best 10 Real Time Chat SDKs and Messaging APIs (2023)

Real-time Chat SDKs are highly popular among enterprises that have an interactive user base. If you are looking to build or enhance your app with in-app chats, you are at the right place! 

This article is focused on giving you the following outcomes: 

To begin with, almost 3.21 billion users across the globe are actively using over-the-top messaging apps (infamously known as OTTs) to communicate on a daily basis. This usage rate is expected to increase over 3.51 billion users in 2025 (Source: Statista Research Report). This is a solid reason why enterprises are quickly switching from traditional email communication to chat solutions in this information era.

What is a Real-time Messaging Chat App?

A real time chat application is an impressive communication medium used in all scales of enterprises. Individuals in your organization can conveniently interact with each other using private and group chat features. This effectively reduces communication gaps at a high rate, leveraging revenue growth and valuable business alliances. Instant messaging can be a game-changer if you’re aimed at endorsing engagement among your stakeholders.

10 Best Chat SDK Providers For Web and Mobile Apps

The first step in building a dynamic chat infrastructure for your business is to identify the best chat API or SDK provider. To curb the burden out, we have curated a list of the top performing Chat SDK tools across the globe.

1. MirrorFly

Mirrorfly is the world’s leading in-app chat SDK preferred by developers for its easy-to-use features like video, voice & messaging features, and simple integration capabilities. It offers both cloud and self-hosted solutions to build feature-rich chat apps. Here are quick details about the platform’s features.

MirrorFly Cloud-based SDKs

As a leading in-app communication provider, MirrorFly offers a wide range of messaging features for a monthly subscription. It includes several benefits such as:

MirrorFly Self-Hosted Solution

MirrorFly’s self-hosting solution is an ideal choice for building white-label chat apps for web & mobile. It offers more than 150+ customizable features



  • Limited participants in Video Conferencing

Supportive Platform:- Chat API for iOS, Android & Web

Pricing :- Free & Paid

Build Your Own Chat App with World Class Features!

2. Twilio

Twilio is a programmable instant chat API suitable most likely for high-volume messaging environments. It is capable of facilitating over 795B interactions with message delivery across multi channels. Twilio holds its position up with a 99.999% API uptime apparently adhering to the compliances.


  • Voice & Video Calls
  • Cross-Channel Messaging
  • Two-factor Authentication
  • Multimedia Support
  • Proactive Notifications
  • Mass Alerts


  • Conversations in High-volume
  • Low latency
  • Message and user scalability 
  • Trial package allows free access for 50 users


  • Customizable pricing based on users and the number of messages

Supportive Platform :-Mobile & Web

Pricing :- Free & Paid

3. PubNub

Pubnub solves the biggest challenge of concurrency control during heavy traffic while balancing its uptime SLA at ease. This Chat API is also well known for keeping pace of its user engagement and retention. The moderation tools availed by this API conserves the standards and civility of its user platforms.


  • Private messaging and group messaging
  • Multi Channel communication
  • Chat Bot Device Chat
  • Tailor-made UI/UX designs
  • Instant and Real-time Notifications
  • Chats for communities and social groups
  • Messaging during live events


  • Caters real-time use cases alongside chats
  • Scalable and reliable
  • Facilitates over 2 trillion message delivery per month
  • Offers over 75 SDKs


  • The standard plan neither grants access to PubNub functions nor complies with HIPAA and GDPR.

Supportive Platform :- Chat API for Android, iOS & Web

Pricing :- Free & Paid

4. Cometchat

Cometchat is a Colorado based in-app messaging solutions platform and is a leading chat API and SDK provider in the industry since 2009. Its noteworthy voice and WebRTC enabled video calling features are preferred from small to large scale enterprises. As a backing to individual users and small scale enterprises, Comechat exclusively composed a Sandbox package.


  • One-on-One text chat
  • Group chat
  • Voice calling
  • Voice and Video conference
  • Video calling


  • Owns CometChat Go, a chat plugin with no-codes.
  •  White-label UI solutions
  • Customizable Auto-scaling
  • Well suited for marketplaces, on-demand services, Edu-tech, Live Stream.


  • The price is significantly higher

Supportive Platform :- Chat SDK for iOS, Android & Web

Pricing :- Free & Paid

5. Sendbird

Sendbird is a trusted Chat API and in-app messaging SDK provider based in the US, offering AES 256 End-to-End Encryption data protection to its user platforms. This reliable source of chat infrastructure supports over 1,000,000 concurrent connections per application and 500,000,000 messages every day. With its users spread across 250 countries, Sendbird establishes reliable features like global language translation.


  • User muting
  • Image filtration
  • Smart throttling
  • Protection against Spam flooding
  • Moderation tools
  • Managing moderator roles & permissions
  • Profanity filters
  • Announcements


  • Private group channels that include 1-on-1 messaging and WhatsApp style closed group chat.
  • Channel freeze 
  • Scalable Infrastructure on AWS
  • Availability of free trial on all Pro Features


  • The starter plan poses limitations on trying essential chat features like announcements and delivery receipts.

Supportive Platform :-Andriod,iOS

Pricing :- Free & Paid

6. Apphitect

Apphitect IM gives its users unique experiences with personal-chats, social interaction and offline messaging. Adaptation of cutting-edge technologies like Erlang, Apache Cassandra, and AWS makes the platform stand out as a leading instant messaging API and chat SDK provider for Android, iOS and Web apps in the industry.


  • In-app chat
  • Push notifications
  • Social integrations
  • Location tracking
  • Video & Voice Calling
  • Offline messages
  • Presence Indicator 
  • Sharing features: Screen and Multimedia


  • Unlimited Storage and self cloud hosting.
  • Possibility of zero downtime
  • Reliable and Scalable
  • Easy Integration and 24×7 customer support


  • It takes ten business days to integrate Chat API into a Website.

Supportive Platform :- Mobile and Web Apps

Pricing :- Free & Paid

7. Quickblox

Quickblox is a leading whitelabel chat solution provider for sectors like banking and finance. The quality of WebRTC-enabled voice and video calling exclaims the reason why users choose this provider. The simple and clean UI/UX designs with flexible data storage are other remarkable advantages its users cannot miss to experience.


  • Integration in active user-management platform
  • Compatible across different platforms 
  • Video & Voice Calling
  • Sharing features: Files, Screen and Multimedia


  • No license restriction and reliable customer support
  • Scalable dedicated servers
  • Offers a ready-made messaging app called Q-Municate for its users
  • End-to-end encryption with adherence to compliances


  • Does not suit platforms other than healthcare, E-commerce, Marketplace and finance

Supportive Platform :- Chat SDK for Android, iOS & Web apps

Pricing :- Free & Paid

8. Getstream

GetStream provides in-app chat APIs and SDKs essential to build chats and new feed infrastructure. The reliability, maintenance and overall accessibility makes Stream’s APIs an user-friendly platform. The UI kits offered by Stream includes live chat, live streams, team chat and gaming interfaces. 


  • Chat Messaging
  • Activity feeds
  • Virtual Events
  • Live Streams


  • Low latency
  • End-to-end encrypted chat infrastructure
  • High end performance & reliability
  • Customizable chat features
  • Easy Integration


  • Limited integration

Supportive Platform :- Chat API for iOS, Android & Web apps

Pricing :- Free & Paid

9. Agora

Agora is a popular Chat SDK provider that delivers real-time voice and video calls to over 40,000,000,000 minutes of real-time connection per month. With complete network monitoring in place, Agora enroute the path for sub-second latency across 250+data centers.


  • Voice and Video calling
  • Live Interactive Audio and Video streaming
  • Recording capability
  • Instant real-time Messaging


  • Customizable UI and third-party Extensions .
  • Tailor made UI 
  • Minimal energy consumption in mobile-batteries
  • Availability of 24×7 development and operational support.
  • Maintains a 400ms average global latency with 99.99% uptime.


  • Not suitable for small and medium business

Supportive Platform :- Mobile & Web Apps

Pricing :- Free & Paid

10. Mesibo

Mesibo is a developer-friendly platform that adorns itself with the best-in-class message switching technology and codecs. It administers the best calling experience at low latencies. Compatible across Android, iOS and web apps, the chat API supports multiple languages at the same time. With Mesibo, users can get everything that makes a realtime chat app.


  • One-on-one messaging
  • High end Video and Voice calls
  • Clean White-label UI
  • Group Messaging
  • End-to-end encryption
  • Push Notifications


  • On cloud and own-premise hosting
  • Customizable moderation and Filters 
  • Permits addition of own encryption and key exchange mechanism.
  • Demo availability


  • Unavailability of Real-time storage and bandwidth in the on-premise Deployment.

Supportive Platform :- Mobile & Web Apps

Pricing :- Free & Paid

Develop Powerful Mobile Apps with Essential Chat Features

1. In-App communication

Chat platform are getting popular among several businesses for their instant messaging facilities without affecting the ongoing activities. Even while you are busy performing a task, you may respond to chats without any impact on the former.

For example, if you are a Financial Consultant and in the middle of an appointment, when you receive any queries from your other clients through the Chat App, you can instantly send them a response without disturbing the ongoing work.

Let’s assume that you are a busy financial consultant preoccupied with an important appointment. On the other hand,  your other clients wait for a reply to their queries that need your minimal or short term attention. Using chat apps, you may respond to them simultaneously without upsetting your primary appointment.

2. Productive Interactions

In every organization, several teams come together to work on the same task. They exercise varied functionalities and require unique discussion spaces. At this instance, Project managers coordinate with the teams and distinct work groups in the chat applications. This allows an assorted project flow with increased productivity and minimal communication gaps.

3. Collaborative Endeavor

The world has efficiently adapted to ‘Remote Working’ in recent years. Be it because of a pandemic or a demanding need, communication mediums have made everything possible! Employees can chat live, share files and screens, make video calls and enjoy several other resources available in the Enterprise chat apps. The technology of instant messaging SDKs have proved to help people achieve great feats together even if spread across the globe.

4. Authenticity and Confidentiality

When an Enterprise chooses to build a custom build chat app, it must ensure security features like multi-layered access and role-based control. This validates the safety and privacy of information shared across different channels. Similarly, chat apps with end-to-end encryption are highly preferred to moderate internal user access and limit third party activities. 

For instance, let’s take a case of how an unprecedented situation was handled by Enterprises across the world during the Covid-19 outbreak. Managements chose to guide and create interaction pools for their employees, without affecting their well-being. At the same time, they ensured security of their know-hows by choosing the right Chat API providers suitable for their business pursuits

Fundamentals of Choosing a Chat SDK Provider for Pre-built Apps

As the first few steps of building a compelling chat infrastructure, narrow down the details of your communication requirements. Define whether you are building an android chat app from scratch or buying a pre-built chat API for Android, iOS and web apps. Dive deep into the crucial factors and create a list of essential elements that can satisfy your business needs. Match them with vendors who you find as the best fit and ensure customization availability. Check on the pricing and brace yourself to level up your game!

Benefits of a Subscription-based Chat Solution

The biggest challenge that comes after choosing a mobile chat SDK provider is to select the best pricing option that well suits you. Here we discuss a list of factors that support the subscription model of chat SDKs:

1. Storage Limitation

Be informed of  the storage limit set by the providers, beyond which a small amount of fee may be applicable.

2. UI Customization

Choose the vendors who provide simple and user friendly UIs. The User Interface (UI) is the first element your customers will come across to understand your product and engage with.

3. User Limit

You may choose to broadcast a chat until the user-limit set by the providers. You can raise the bar by choosing to pay for it. Meanwhile, this results in limiting the number of concurrent users and maintains legitimacy.

4. Storage & Access

Real-time Chat SDK tools provide you features like chat message retention by which you can keep your important conversations safe. On the contrary, subscription based chat solutions have limitations over saving your data.

5. Scalability

Chat SDKs give you an opportunity to enjoy limitless scalability. However, chat solutions with subscriptions do not offer this.

6. Monetization

Try out sponsorship and in-chat payment options and convert your chat apps into a monetizing resource.

7. Pricing

Choosing a provider that offers both SaaS and SaaP pricing models would be the wisest option if you consider both budget and scalability. This way, you can start with a SaaS plan and pay only for the features you use. And when your user base expands, you can switch easily to a more customizable and scalable SaaP option.


To summarize, each Chat SDK provider mentioned in this article has their own unique selling proposition. It is now your complete obligation to keep a clear account of your requirements and make the wisest choice. Gear up to amplify your business’ user engagement through smart instant messaging chat app features and boost your success rate.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do you make a real-time chat application?

You can build a real-time chat application for your business in two ways:

1. Build from scratch: This option lets you have full control over features, but you must look after security and hosting which may seem to be a tedious task.

2. Third-party in-app chat API or SDK: Use developer-friendly chat SDK  for monthly or custom pricing, and build chat apps as per your preference.

What are the three 3 components of a chat system?

Generally, chat systems consists of three main components:

1. Server class, where messages are sent between client and server
2. Communication class, that is responsible for maintaining database
3. Client application, that connects to the chat server

What Is A Chat SDK?

Chat SDK, in simple terms, is an easy-to-integrate chat solution that allows the addition of high-performing chat services on both web and mobile apps. With chat SDK, developers can easily integrate powerful messaging features without having to write complex logic.

Is MirrorFly chat SDK free?

Yes, MirrorFly’s chat SDK is completely free for developers. They can avail high-end chat features like single and group chats, push notifications, presence indicators, and a lot more for a lifetime free of cost. Additionally, MirrorFly also offers a 21-day free trial on voice and video calls too. For more information on pricing details, explore our pricing page.

Which is a secure self hosted chat app?

MirrorFly is the most secure in-app chat SDK for Android, iOS and web apps. It offers 150+ customizable chat, voice, and video capabilities along with 99.999% uptime SLA and average response time less than 100ms. Our messaging SDK protects user conversations with secure end-to-end encryption protocols like SSL/TLS, AES, and industry compliances like HIPAA & GDPR. To know more about our self-hosted solution, talk to our team of experts

You Can Also Try Out Our Free Chat Platform And Test All Of Our In-App Chat Features
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Parthiba is a Product Marketer, helping providers of the various industries like healthcare, education, etc., to elevate their conversation value with the help of powerful communication solutions to drive better communication experience.


  1. ahamed Reply

    We need to integrate messaging features into our existing app. What could be the costs? Will MirrorFly Messaging SDK fit for my business requirements?

    1. Vigneshwar Reply

      Hi Ahamed,

      Great that you’ve chosen MirrorFly chat SDK to build in-app messaging into your app. Our chat SDK for Android, iOS and web apps come in 2 flexible pricing models:

      SaaP: This self-hosted chat solution offers you 100% customizable chat SDKs for a one-time license cost.
      SaaS: Provides Free Chat SDKFree Chat SDK for iOS, Android and web apps, dedicated cloud servers and 21-day Free trial of our video and voice chat SDKs.

      Overall, our unparalleled scalability and flexible pricing models lets you add the chat features across your app, as per your business needs.

  2. Didyk Reply

    Hi, I develop a learning platform with many features and want to integrate a group chat API for Android app. Can I get the price sheet for your product? And would be very good if I can pay for used time, not for a month. I need your Messaging API costs and hosting plan.

    1. Vigneshwar Reply

      Hello Didyk,

      It is amazing to know that you want to integrate MirrorFly’s chat SDK for your e-learning app.
      I completely understand that you prefer a custom pricing to use our SDK and I’m glad to inform you that we’ve got a self-hosted chat solution that will perfectly fit your needs. To know more about the pricing, you can directly contact our team of experts.

  3. Tunisha Reply

    We are developing a health care solution, so we need an instant messaging API & SDK to continue the development of the communication module.

    1. Vigneshwar Reply

      Hello Tunisha,

      Good to know about your healthcare platform. It’s our pleasure to support your app with the best chat SDK to build messaging features. MirrorFly chat SDK comes with end to end encryption protocols like AES-256 and SSL, along with industry-grade regulations like HIPAA and GDPR to protect the Personal Health Information (PHI) of your users. It would be a great choice to develop communication within your app, with our powerful chat features.

  4. Maria Reply

    Hi, we are a fintech company located in Singapore and Indonesia, we are looking for an in-app messaging feature for our banking app. Would be great if we could arrange a time for a discussion. Thanks and please share the price list of your Chat API for Android apps

    1. Vigneshwar Reply

      Hi Maria!

      It’s nice to know about your Fintech company. Glad that you are interested in our chat SDK for building in-app messaging features into your app. Yes sure, our experts will be ready to help you with any questions about our chat SDK. Feel free to fill in your details on our contact form and our support team will get in touch with you at the earliest! Meanwhile, check out our monthly packages on our pricing page or explore our 100% customizable chat solution.

  5. Manish Reply

    Hello , I am in need of a real time chat solution with video and voice calling for Hospik. I am building a chat platform to connect healthcare providers to patients.

    1. Vigneshwar Reply

      Hello Manish, your healthcare chat solution with video and voice calling sounds great! I’m glad to let you know that MirrorFly offers the best in-app chat features you are looking for. You can avail of benefits like 1-to-1 and group chats, moderations, read receipts, message status, and presence indicators by getting our messaging SDK for monthly pricing or for a one-time license cost.

  6. Peshuva Reply

    We are looking to integrate an instant messaging API with a web-based software and a mobile application. MirrorFly is one of the providers that we are looking into and would like to discuss more about its capabilities and specific features

    1. Vigneshwar Reply

      Hello Peshuva, very glad that you are interested in our in-app messaging SDK. As per your requirement, our video, voice and chat features are available for both web and mobile apps. And I’d urge you to fill in the contact form and our experts will get in touch with you shortly to resolve any queries related to our chat SDK and its capabilities. Meanwhile, you can check out our monthly pricing plans and custom pricing to know more about the cost of our messaging SDK.

  7. brad Reply

    We would like to have a call as soon as possible to understand your instant messaging SDK pricing and how you compare to Agora, which we have been working with to date. We build apps in the sports space, including TennisONE and the soon-to-be-released Bleacher App that utilizes multi-directional interactive video to join sports fans around their favorite sport. It is somewhat time sensitive so please let me know when you have your earliest time slot available. Thanks, Brad

    1. Vigneshwar Reply

      Hello Brad,
      I completely get the time sensitivity of your need for a chat SDK. Well, I must say MirrorFly is right at your save. As a #1 alternative to the agora, MirrorFly outperforms your existing provider by offering a Twin pricing model. It provides both white-label chat solution and a cloud solution, to fit your in-app communication needs perfectly. Just fill in the contact form and our team of experts will reach out for complete assistance shortly.

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