Introduction to Amazon Simple Notification Service

Welcome to Amazon’s simple notification service. Let’s start our discussion with a simple question. Imagine you’re in a situation where you have microservices that need to talk to each other and need to be disassociated or you need to send an email to system administrators or developers informing them about some events happening in your architecture.

Let’s see,  how can you easily do that on Amazon? And the answer is Amazon SNS’s simple notification service.


What actually is Amazon SNS? There’s going to be a discussion about this in our Blog, as well as its characteristics and usage, and a demonstration of its service. Let’s have a service introduction for SNS.

Amazon SNS

Amazon SNS is a logical access point that acts as a communication channel. It has one of the most important characteristics like flexibility, fully managed pub/sub messaging, and mobile communication service. Besides, it also coordinates the delivery of messages subscribing to endpoints and clients, enabling you to send different information to different subscribers. It’s also easy to set up, operate, and send reliable communications. Also, it allows decoupling and scales microservices distributed systems and serverless applications. 

Amazon SNS allows you to have Pub/Sub messaging for different systems in Amazon, like AWS lambda HTTP/HTTPS, and Amazon SQS. Also, Amazon SNS mobile notifications allow you to do similar publishing, but with two different mobile systems like ADM, APNS, GCM, MPNS, and WNS  subscribers.

Pub/Sub Architecture
Mobile Push Architecture
SMS Architecture

Features and Capabilities of Amazon SNS

  • Application-to-Application : Subscribers of application-to-application messaging include Amazon Kinesis Data Firehose delivery streams, Lambda functions, Amazon SQS queues, and AWS Event Fork Pipelines. See Using Amazon SNS for application-to-application (A2A) messaging for more information
  • Application-to-Person Notifications : Notifications for applications to people are delivered to subscribers based on their mobile applications, mobile phone numbers, or email addresses. For more information, see Using Amazon SNS for A2P messaging
  • Standard and FIFO Topics : A FIFO topic ensures that messages are ordered by their priority, defines groups, and prevents duplication. Only Amazon SQS FIFO queues can subscribe to a FIFO topic. For more information, see Message ordering and deduplication (FIFO topics). Standard topics can be used when message delivery orders and possible message duplication are not critical. Any protocol that is supported can subscribe to a standard topic
  • Message durability : Message durability is achieved with a variety of strategies: Published messages are stored across multiple, geographically separated servers and data centers; if a subscribed endpoint isn’t available, Amazon SNS retries delivery
  • Message archiving and analytics : The Kinesis Data Firehose delivery streams are available as SNS topics, through which you can send notifications to additional archiving and analytics endpoints, such as Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) buckets, Amazon Redshift tables, and more
  • Message attributes : A message attribute allows you to provide any arbitrary metadata about the message
  • Message filtering : To receive a subset of the messages, a subscriber must assign a filter policy to the topic subscription. When an incoming message matches the filter policy attributes, the message is passed along to the subscribed endpoint
  • Message security : AWS KMS provides encryption keys for protecting the contents of messages that are stored in Amazon SNS topics. For more information, see Encryption at rest
  • Mobile Push Notifications : Amazon SNS allows you to send push notification messages directly to apps on mobile devices. The mobile app can display push notification messages as badge updates, sound alerts, or even message alerts

Amazon SNS Pricing Model


  • Mobile Push Notifications: 1 million
  • Worldwide SMS: 100
  • email/email-JSON: 1000
  • HTTP/HTTPS: 100000
  • SQS: No charge for deliveries to SQS Queues, SQS Pricing applies
  • Lambda Functions: No charge for lambda, Lambda pricing applies


  • Mobile Push Notifications: $0.50 per million
  • Worldwide SMS: Custom
  • email/email-JSON: $2.00 per 100000
  • HTTP/HTTPS: $0.60 per million
  • SQS: No charge for deliveries to SQS Queues. Normal SQS pricing applies
  • Lambda functions: No Charge for deliveries to Lambda. Lambda pricing applies

Getting started with Amazon SNS

Amazon Simple Notification Service is a highly available, cost-effective method for sending push notifications to mobile users, email recipients, and other distributed systems. It allows you to send messages to a variety of platforms such as iOS, Android, Java, Python, or PHP. Amazon SNS has pay-as-you-go pricing with no up-front fees or commitments, which makes it more economical.

Do you want to know more about Amazon SNS and how it can work for you? Then, leave your comments in the section below.

About the author

Krishna Sai Nallapaneni

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