SendBird Competitors: SendBird vs Alternatives

If you are looking for a SendBird competitor, there is a multitude of alternatives out there. With so many available options to choose from, it can be hard to decide which cloud communication platform will help you stand out among your competition. It is essential to determine which features matter most to your project and workflow when sifting through the competitive landscape of chat API offerings.


First, here’s a bit of background on one of the members of Stream’s competition, SendBird, to set the standard for comparison. Sendbird is a solution that specializes in real-time chat and messaging for mobile apps and websites.

SendBird Chat Main Features

  • Backend-chat
    • Limitations to how many users can be in a group chat (100)
    • Client-side SDKs
    • Customizable UI
    • Dashboard and moderation tools
    • Customer Support
    • 1:1, group, or open channel chat
      • Typing indicators
      • Read receipts
      • User presence
      • @Mentions
      • Encrypted media sharing
      • Auto-thumbnail generation
      • Webhooks
      • Chatbot interface
      • Invitations
      • Chat history
      • Translations
    • Customizable features with real-time data, like a custom notification system or sentiment analysis

SendBird Main Channel Types

  1. Marketplaces
  2. On-Demand
  3. Online Community
  4. Healthcare
  5. Gaming
  6. Live Streaming

Miscellaneous Information about SendBird

  • Founded: 2013
  • Employees: Over 170
  • Funding: Over 120 million
  • SDK Installs: Over 10,000

Features to Consider when Comparing Competitive Chat Solutions


  • An advanced, out-of-the-box feature for 1:1, group, or open channel messaging experiences. They provide users the ability to “react” to a post or message with a particular emotion.


  • Creates the ability to “reply” to a post or message to start a thread off of an already-established thread.

AI Moderation

  • Gives users the options to implement the following: user bans, user mutings, freezes on chat channels, user permission controls, image filtering, smart-throttling, spam flood protection, chat moderation, user moderation, moderators, profanity filters.


  • The consideration of maximum number of chat members allowed in a group at once and/or the maximum number of concurrent connections allowed at once.

Front-End Components

  • Presents users with multiple component libraries for React, React Native, iOS and Android. This reduces the time needed to build the chat frontend. Front-end components include built-in support for unread counts, connection recovery, message states and read events.

SendBird vs Stream

Stream makes it simple to add chat to any application, making it the most performant and scalable option on the market. With a UI kit, React Components, and a Go-powered backend API, Stream’s chat has the broadest offerings of customizable features out of Sendbird’s competition. AI-based moderation is integrated into the product to help reduce your moderation workload.

Stream Chat Benefits over SendBird

  • Chat features: Reactions, Threads, Slash Commands, Rich Messaging
  • More scalable
    • No limit on how many users can be in a single chat room at once
  • HIPAA compliant
  • Fully-customizable component libraries for React, React Native, iOS (Swift), Android (Java/Kotlin), and Flutter
  • Backend SDKs for all commonly used languages
  • Comprehensive step-by-step tutorials for easy integration
  • More AI Moderation
  • Stabler infrastructure
  • Two to four times more cost effective
  • Simpler Migration
  • 99.99% uptime SLA guarantee (industry-leading)
  • Faster Customer Support
  • Front End Components

    • Built-in support for unread counts, connection recovery, message states, and read events

      Stream chat has more features than many competitors

Stream’s Main Channel Types

  1. Livestream (practical defaults in case you want to build chat like YouTube or Twitch)
  2. Messaging (designed for apps such as WhatsApp or Facebook’s Messenger)
  3. Team (if you want to create an original alternative to Slack or something similar)
  4. Gaming (configured for in-game chat)
  5. Commerce (helpful defaults for building something like your own version of Intercom or Drift)

Stream Pricing

The “Standard Chat” offering starts at $499/month with the following features:

  • 25k Monthly Active Users
  • 3 Million Messages/month
  • Stream Powered CDN for hosting rich media
  • 7 Million Messages (storage)
  • Unlimited Message/Data Retention
  • 1,250 Peak Concurrent Connections

Anything above those numbers is covered under an Enterprise Chat offering, which is 100% customizable. For more information on pricing, you can ask anything here. Additionally, Stream offers the following to our API for Chat, free of charge:

  • React Components
  • Chat UI Kit
  • SDKs
  • CLI

According to Product Hunt users, Stream Chat is a 5-star rated SendBird competitor, so if you’re ready for a SendBird Migration, Stream makes it easy!

SendBird vs Pusher Chatkit

Update: Pusher Chatkit is shutting down 4/23/20. Need an alternative solution? See our migration guide.

Pusher Chatkit offers bi-directional hosted APIs that are flexible, scalable, and simple based on Go. Pusher’s main competitive advantage is their realtime functionalities, but they don’t have as many features as SendBird or Stream.

Pusher Chatkit Benefits over SendBird

  • Realtime Experts
  • 350-strong developer community providing resources for developing
  • Education Environment
    • Creates an interactive and personalized learning environment by connecting students and teachers and encouraging information sharing and group study
  • 1-1 and group chat
    • Multiple push notifications

Pusher Main Channel Types

  1. Marketplace
  2. Team Collaboration
  3. On-Demand Services
  4. Education Solutions

Pusher Pricing


  • Developers: Free
  • Startup: $99/month
  • Growth: $499/month
  • Options to customize

SendBird vs PubNub

PubNub is a Data Stream Network (DSN) and offers real-time infrastructure-as-a-service. Its primary product is a realtime public/subscribe message API built on their DSN.

PubNub Benefits over SendBird

  • 99.99% SLA-backed reliability
  • 75+ SDKs
  • Data Stream Network (DSN) for developers to build realtime apps as easily as building a web page
  • Doctor-patient communication
  • Direct and group chats
    • Message reactions
      *Stream Filter (users are able to filter which messages are returned to them based on metadata)
    • Message Queue (each PubNub instance has its own in-memory message queue that holds on to most recent 100 published messages across all subscribed channels)
    • Catch-Up (if user loses internet connection, they will automatically receive any messages missed when they regain connectivity)
    • Unlimited concurrent connections
    • Unlimited channels

PubNub Main Channel Types

  1. Gaming
  2. E-Learning
  3. Healthcare
  4. Social & Entertainment
  5. Rideshare
  6. Fleet Tracking & Dispatch
  7. IoT & Connected Devices
  8. Marketplaces
  9. DevOps

PubNub Pricing


  • Free trial is $49/month (prepay toward usage) until you’re ready to scale your project
  • Basic: Free
  • Gold: $500/month
  • Platinum: $1500/month
  • Customized Enterprise: $5000/month or 5% of the bill

SendBird vs Firebase

Firebase’s In-App Messaging helps engage users by sending them targeted messages that nudge them to complete key in-app actions, like beating a game level, buying an item, or subscribing to content.

Firebase Benefits over SendBird

  • Integrates with analytics and predictions to give advanced targeting capabilities
  • Send messages to users based on actions and interests
  • More affordable

Firebase Pricing

Start for free, then pay as you go.

Free products:

  • A/B Testing
  • Analytics
  • App Indexing
  • Authentication (except Phone Auth)
  • Cloud Messaging (FCM), Crashlytics
  • Dynamic Links
  • Performance Monitoring
  • Prediction
  • Remote Config.

SendBird vs Applozic

Applozic is a messaging app service that can be integrated into your existing business app or workflow. It is designed for internal messaging within an on-site server management system or messaging functionality for a new public app.

Applozic’s Benefits over SendBird

  • Actionable messages (pass custom metadata in messages from back-end for an interactive experience to facilitate key parts of customer’s journey)
  • Go from Pixels to Code (build custom UI for a branded experience or ship out with drop-inUI)
  • Ability to replicate custom design mocks and create the exact personalized chat experience

Applozic Main Channel Types

  1. E-commerce & Marketplaces
  2. Customer Support
  3. Healthcare
  4. On-Demand Services
  5. Social Communities
  6. Field Services

Applozic Pricing


  • Starter: $49/month
  • Growth: $149/month
  • Pro: $499/month
  • Enterprise Plan: Custom pricing

Honorable Mentions

  • Nexmo
  • Twilio
  • Podium
  • Bandwidth
  • Plivo
  • MessageBird
  • Chatbox
  • Conversocial
  • Cometchat
  • Slack
  • Hyphenate
  • Intercom
  • Quickblox
  • Sinch
  • Mattermost
  • Beep

Other Features to Consider when Choosing Chat API

  • Messages (i.e: read receipts, @mentions, online user presence, typing indicators, translation, push notification preference, communication between different mobile apps, rich media file support)

  • Integrations (data exports, identity provider service (such as OAuth), Bot interface, webhooks, query filter)

  • Analytics (analytics dashboard, MAU. DAU, query reporting)

  • Channels (distinct & non-distinct channels, open channels, auto-accept invitations preference)

  • Value-Adds (desk integration, announcements)

  • Medium (video and voice chats)

  • Platforms (iOS, Android, Javascript, .met, unity, server-side platform APIs, connection handler)

  • Reliable Customer Migration

  • Customer Support

    SendBird Competitors Comparison of Main Features

    Reactions Threading Moderation Scalability Front-End Components
    SendBird X Partial
    Stream X X X X X
    PubNub X Partial X
    Applozic X


With X’s all across the board, it’s clear that Stream has the highest-performing chat infrastructure on the market. With Stream’s import tools and customizable interfaces, we can help get you off of any other chat provider and into Stream Chat in no time.

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