Developers: Implement Unification support in your apps, the community demands it

We've covered the Unification service fairly extensively here at Windows Phone Central and have continued to support Liquid Daffodil with attempts to drum up interest from developers to implement support for Unification in their apps. We've got some numbers to share with you all today with how the Unification service is shaping up and how the community is getting involved.

tl;dr if you haven't yet connected your app with Unification, you may wish to do so.

It has been revealed that Liquid Daffodil has received thousands of requests from both the Windows and Windows Phone consumer base. The team is averaging approximately 120 app requests each and every day, and this isn't including those who contact developers directly with said requests. It's clear that many want a centralised location for notifications and until Microsoft implement such a feature, Unification is the only solution.

While developers continue to trickle support through app updates and more, the service is serving more than a million notifications every week. That's not bad for a third-party notification centre, which currently doesn't sport strong developer support. We're looking at nearly 150,000 notifications per day. Cool fact: the highest percentage of notification actually come through our own Windows Phone Central app!

Whatever the reason may be for developers not wanting to add support, Liquid Daffodil has published this video to run through how easy it is to implement the necessary code:

Along with the above resource, the team has also provided some information to help drive interest. What's interesting to note is how Unification itself is not simply a history of toast notifications displayed in a handy list, but is more of a robust mechanism developers can take full advantage of to communicate content directly to users. This could open up the following scenarios:

  • Global communication of updates, bug fixes, general notes to all users
  • Group or individual notifications of specific information, such as notifying users of a special or hidden feature, wherein they can take action in Unification via App-to-App Communication. (i.e.; 'tap' this notification to extend your Trial, or Unlock a Feature, etc.)
  • Communicate more detailed information than what's possible with toast notifications, which are restricted in length
  • Fire out content and alerts that are an alternative to toasts, which will still be received even with toast notifications turned off for the app
  • Ability for users to translate notifications into their own language, without developers having to provide localized notifications for hundreds of languages.

That's a solid list of possibilities, which opens up a new level of interaction with consumers. Here's how the team sums up Unification:

"Unification is an Enterprise-level suite of services, hosted and managed via Windows Azure that has been created to provide developers of Windows-based systems a way to meet the needs of their users, and was originally planned to be for Liquid Daffodil apps only. When it was confirmed that Microsoft would not be providing a similar service, a number of developers thought it made sense to offer it to the developer community “at large” and we agreed. "

If you're not up to waiting for Microsoft to eventually add a notification center in a future update (nothing has been confirmed thus far) and are interested in adding Unification support to your app(s), be sure to get in touch with Liquid Daffodil ( for more details. 

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • Unification is a very nice initiative .. But only a couple of my fav apps use it
    When Whatsapp uses it , the app will become awesome
  • I agree. I have it pinned but only two of my favorite apps use it; Gleek and WPCentral.
  • Me too
  • I just use WPCentral app which is much much better .. I stopped using their twitter apps as official one is much better
  • Personally, I consider it to be a form of spyware, so I'm keeping my distance until the offical solution comes.  And no matter what LD's trolls on here say, it will come eventually.  It had better!
  • The app has great potential for third party apps, but so far only wpc use it on my phone, so i don't use unification on my start screen...for now...
  • I still don't understand what it does. Unified notifications, but of what exactly?
  • At a bare minimum, any Toast and Tile updates from apps that you may miss. Right now only the most recent information can be displayed, but even if a message was shown on a Live Tile or Toast one minute before that, its gone forever.
  • If I'm on my PC, shouldn't my unification tile show a one that my phone's wpc app shows a one?
  • are u serious? .-.
    it's all your apps notifications in one place! i believe it works much like Android notification just needs more apps support!
  • I never heard of it, and the article does not seem to explain it or link to an explanation. While *some* of the article's target audience are people that already know everything ever, it wouldn't hurt to help people new to the topic get up to speed.
  • That's the beauty of the tags on articles. Open the article in a browser, scroll to the bottom (before comments), click "Unification" to read all other articles regarding it.
  • lol community demands it?
    for one this is a function that i don't bother with lol. its not just a line of codes , it hell load of codes for those complex apps. i basically I don't see a need for it. if needed ms will release one which doesn't need whole of 140k apps developer to add extra code into it.
    look at samsung multi window, that is true 2 line add in, but how many developer is adding it? lol that is real community demand for that samsung multi window code
    So in Short I owned 5 Lumia and I don't even bother to want this at all
  • Well, you certainly can have that perspective, but truth is users want it in their apps, they don't care who or how, and since MSFT won't be providing it, someone had to...are YOU going to do it?
  • Has Microsoft ever actually said it won't be added? The only thing I've heard them mention regarding it is that they ran out of time rushing WP8 to market... implying that they intend to at some point.
  • How do we know MS won't be providing it?  They'd better!
  • So, Microsoft is ruled out: there goes SMS, email, Skype, downloads. Who's going to do it? Facebook? Twitter? WhatsApp? It's unfortunate, but I don't see any notifications which you actually might need to be kept around and aggregated that will work with this. Are people really asking for a notification centre that will inform you of new news articles? That's precisely what live tiles are for and absolutely not what a notification centre should be on Windows Phone.
  • Meh... I think I'll wait for the official solution. I don't think that this the right way to go at it. I mean we'll never get apps like facebook, Whatsapp and foursquare on there so why even bother.
  • Well, there will NOT be an official solution. You'll get the news soon. :)
  • Source? Unless you have inside info on Blue, I don't really believe you...
  • And you know this how? 
  • If you are right, this is a disaster worth leaving WP over. WP simply cannot be recommended as a serious phone OS without it.
  • LD, who are you trying to fool? Try a little harder next time.
  • Agree.  Its hard enough to get developers to implement actual Windows Phone specific features straight from MS.  Aside from a few apps, they will not bother to adopt this service (or even learn about it).  If I were developing an app right now, the only reason I would implement this service is to get props and mentions on WPCentral.  Otherwise, why bother, when MS will probably eventually release a real notifications system and this service will be completely obsoleted.
  • My problem with this, is the app has to be pinned, along with the unification app, to the start screen taking up room and why would I need the unification app if the app I have pinned has a live tile. Now if all I had to do was pin the unification app and all the notifications still come through from the various apps I have within unification that would make more sense. Ex: when I get a notification from wpCentral, it shows up on the live tile 5 minutes before showing on the unification tile, making the unification app useless.
  • I don't need you to believe. It won't change what happens. :)
  • Help me understand.  Are you trying to gain customers, or lose them?
    I don't demand it.
    In fact I won't be downloading any apps that bake this in.
    I have to wonder what is it with WPCentral and their constant publicity of LD.
  • DYK that based on article per app coverage, Liquid Daffodil actually gets far LESS coverage than others apps with similar popularity? Check it yourself.
  • Thank god I'm not the only one noticing WPC publicity for LD. I don't want to bash the devs but I've never liked their apps that much :/ Strange names, ugly icons, and 100 different twitter clients that don't bring much to the table compared to Mehdoh or Rowi...
  • Someone please clarify if they know.
    Does unification handle real time push notifications or just notifications with background agents?
    Does it show the notification count (again real time, not every 30 minutes) in their live tile?
    Does it have deep linking (i,e directly launching a story in the other app) support?
    Are rich notifications possible? (like with images and formatting)
  • The answer is yes, to all if these questions, if you want it.
  • Thanks. Just had one more question. Can it queue up the notifications when my phone is in battery saver mode and deliver it later? Currently, that is one of my main problem with WP. When I'm in battery saver mode, notifications are not delivered at all which is annoying.
  • Notification count is every 30 mins.
  • That defeats the purpose if you ask me.
  • True for real time apps, not so much for app like windows central.
  • My only question and probably one of the most is: why doesn't Microsoft develop a notification centre?!
  • Because live tiles make your start screen the "unified" notification centre. Works like a charm when u "get" ms's philosophy but some people still refuse to want to change, they've always had one before windows phone so its gonna be a problem until they get one.
  • Exactly. Same here. My Start screen is my NC and if you have an app that delivers Toasts, why wouldn't you have that app pinned as a live tile?
    This just adds an extra layer of complexity that is not needed imo
  • Same here to, doesn't really get the point. Got everything I need on my start screen and are in no need for more notification than I get there.
    But for all those that want WP to be like Android... ;)
  • You people don't seem to understand that live tiles are not big enough to show the amount of information that notifications on other platforms show. Not only that, but you cannot view notifications you have missed. There needs to be a history of notifications.
    An easy fix is an app that shows every missed notification of the day and for live tiles to show more information by scrolling them in or something more creative.
  • I have too many apps that send notifications to have them all pinned. Particularly games, and Facebook notifications never show up on my tile, ESPN notifications don't either... the toast pops up with half a sentence and then poof, gone.
  • Well put. I'm a recent convert from iOS, and this is an obvious hole in WP8 functionality. Otherwise, nothing but praise for the OS to this point.
  • If I'm going to get notifications every time there's a new story on here? I'm out. The vast amount of articles and features on here aren't relevant (I'm not a gamer or Microsoft/Windows fan boy) to me. Add in blurry images of phones that aren't released yet and links to watch adverts for a phone I already own, or a clip of said phone being used in a TV program? I'll carry on with my day.... ... Love your work guys, just not all/most of it.
    *Apologies for going off topic* 
  • Turn notifications off? I agree that a lot of the content isn't too relevant to me either but WP doesn't produce all that much news so they've got to provide content on other stuff too to keep people coming here. I have now began using this site/app for basically all my windows/microsoft news now. I think it is quite good.
  • Dude just turn off toast notifications .. The live tile will keep on updating with the number of new articles shown .
  • I totally get that. I don't have to like it though. 
  • Doesn't this beat the whole purpose of live tiles? Anyways its good that this app is getting so much recognition and backing...good for the entire WP community...happy for the devs!
  • "Doesn't this beat the whole purpose of live tiles?" Yes and no. Unless you have your app pinned as a Live Tile, you won't see any notification until you go into that app itself. So, if you have every app that uses notifications pinned to your Start screen, then you would have no need for it.
  • live tiles don't show the toast notifications you have missed.
  • They do
  • Are Liquid Daffodil funded by Mobile Nations or something?
  • +1
  • Yes, I'm also very suspicious of Codesmith, who's telling us all that there will be no notification centre natively in Windows Phone.  He works for Liquid Daffodil, there is no way he could know this, there is no way Microsoft would share that information with his company.
    He's clearly pushing an agenda to get more apps using his system.  Fair enough, but what kind of data are Liquid Daffodil collecting from all these WP users' notifications?
  • It's good to see this kind of commitment in developing stuff like this. I personally found little use for Unification and I have no need of a notification centre, but still. 
  • Its obvious that some of you just don't "get it" and that's okay. Forward Thinking Developers will implement it. For example, we just got confirmation that Itsdagram is adding support. Everyone else will just have some great features on their phones that you won't. Its all good. :)
  • It's comments like these, from you - the developer - that are quite off putting (to me, at least).  I don't think I've ever seen such unprofessionalism displayed by a developer!  Every post on a LD app, you chime in, and condescend to anyone that does not laud your efforts/apps.
    While I have no use for this type of app, even if I did, I would not support this type of behavior.
  • +1 Berating and defensiveness happens a little too easy here. I wonder what's up with that $$$?
  • Thank you!
  • +1 to you sir.
  • Down with LD!
  • +1. I don't like the condescending tone of your comments and will not support a developer acting in such an unprofessional manner.
  • How do we know he represent LD?
  • Itsdagram notifications will be great. So would WhatsApp, Kik,, Skype, Facebook, and Twitter
  • Awesome! Another pointless 3rd party app.
  • I welcome official notification center in the OS itself but I will never use one developed by a third party.
  • Microsoft kinda has one in the ME tile but they just need to add apps to it. If they don't do this then I hope its a dropdown menu.
  • Forgot I had this app.
  • Love the reference to the Animatrix in the title Rich ;o)
    Keen to make use of this in Podcast Lounge in a future update. Seems like an obvious addition to us!
  • I don't demand this. I demand an official notification center from MS.
  • exactly.  this thing will die ont he vine once a built in notification center shows up.
  • Go to the MS site and vote for it as a suggestion, it already has thousands of votes and the more the better.
  • Good point guys, but personally if Notification Center is not announce for Windows Phone 8.1 this June at Build conference, I am out of the platform. No matter how many developers you got to make their App compatible with this third party solution it will always be major Apps that are not compatible with it. The OS just needs a real Notification Center solution and it needs it ASAP.
    I am done pinning apps I do not want on my home screen.
    I am done putting tiles I do not want on top of my screen just to avoid scrolling down my 5 miles Start Screen and individually check each tile manually for numeric notifications
    I am done having 100 installed Apps but only 5 App limit for Notification on my lock screen
    I am done hunting for Notifications in general. App Notifications should hunt for me, be easily accessible with dismiss options.
    I really love everything about Windows Phone. But the Notification Situation is simply killing me and its critical for me to be available with the next major update.... And you can debate all you want on this.
  • Ill be switching to HTC's latest if this doesn't happen by 8.1
  • Well put. I'm a recent convert from iOS, and this is an obvious hole in WP8 functionality. Otherwise, nothing but praise for the OS to this point.
  • LOL as much as I love WP8 and WPCentral, this article is a joke. "The community demands it" bahahaha
  • Ok so at the 2 minute mark of the video there's a line that says:
    "DYK: Xbox One and Windows "Blue" WILL NOT have cross-platform notification or API for Developers? But YOU CAN NOW!"
    How can anyone be so sure, especially with this floating arround:
  • I saw that the other day and got my hopes up. Rumor has it that XBOX One already runs an early version of Windows 8.1 Kernel. Maybe just maybe the Notification Center is now integrated there, if true WIndows PCs/Tablets and Windows Phone sharing the same kernel will all get it with the Blue 8.1 update.
  • Unified notifications for Xbox 360 is already seen in Xbox Live tile of WinPho .. Nothing new is shown actually
  • As a developer I was curious about this so I went to the LD site to find out more information but couldn't locate any. I saw at the bottom of their website a "Developers" link, however it didn't work. The Windows 8 page of their apps doesn't seem to show it either. I gave in and googled "liquid daffodil unification" and finally found a page that doesn't appear to be linked from their main website and isn't included in LD's branding or styling which seems odd.
    Is the expected avenue of developer education and interaction inteded to be through the app itself? If so I would question LD's marketing. If this is being touted as an "Enterpise" grade platform it's going to need some of the support, marketing and documentation that go with enterprise software.
  • LOL
    Of course most notifications have come from WPCENTRAL, its the only app supported worth a flip.
    I've downloaded & deleted Unification so many times... until social networks and games work with it (possibly never), its useless to me. Sorry, its been a great attempt at offering something WP really needs - I just don't see it working out.
    I think our best bet is to vote for adding the feature on Microsoft's site.
  • CODESMITH got a little testy in here, sorry bro love the idea. WPC should have an article demanding Microsoft adds notifications and informing their members on how their voice can be heard.
  • I can't disagree more. It's inevitable that Microsoft will implement this in the future, so why are we in a hurry to implement a custom solution as a mandate? Especially knowing official apps won't likely do it anyway.
  • Right, as you can see here, small time developers aren't exactly jumping at the opportunity - how susceptible do you think the major ones are?
    I love the idea and applaud Unifications continued efforts (even if he comes across as a douche in his comments here), maybe if notifications don't show up in the OS update it will gain enough support for major developers to take notice - probably not though.
  • This is exactly how I feel. While I appreciate the efforts of LD I see no point in this app. the only thing I am worried about for Notification center are email, txt and skype. All MS products and we will never see them supported in this app. I also don't care for Codesmith's attitude with these comments.
  • I installed Unification, my battery began to drain extremely fast. So I removed it. Has this issue been resolved?
  • This all sounds good. Keep up the good work.
  • I can't make it work.
    I don't get any notifications.
    I have WPC and some other apps that should work but no notifications.
    I have uninstalled it and reinstalled it, made the set up, and enabled the feature in the apps, but nothing.
    Lumia 800 with WP7.8
  • Unification is a cool app/idea. However, as a fellow community member--and not to dis LD, but--I do not demand Unification support in any app, nor do I care if any app does support Unification. If I want notifications from an app, I will pin it to my start screen. Missing a notification of said app is not an issue for me, because I tap the app and viola! I see what I what I missed. I don't need yet another list for me to wade through and manage.
  • Here is a bit of logic for the author to consider.  If you need to continue "to support Liquid Daffodil with attempts to drum up interest" then the community clearly does not demand it.  That makes it a pet cause of yours, not a platform wide need.  BTW, when you consider that this is supposedly for Windows and Windows Phone, 120 requests per day is an embarrasingly small number that reflects a general lack of interest. If you claim you have the numbers then try doing the math....
  • My take on that 120 requests/day is different. I see it as good news, considering not everyone knows about LD.
  • I just don't get how they are making money out of this... Having this service running with 1M notifications a month mustn't be cheap. Great effort though :)
  • I think it is a great concept and I am excited to have something like this as part of the OS. With that... I cannot seem to get the app to work. I have it set up for WPC and have yet to see a notification from within unification. Again, great concept (if it works), but if no apps will support, no point.
  • I don't get the point of a notification center on my start screen.. I have any apps I want notifications for on my start screen ready to update
  • EXACTLY what Wyatt4Windows said.  There is just no point to this app.  Every notification I need is on the live tiles I actually care about.  Why on earth would I want to sift through a bunch of crud on a single app when I get exactly the info I need from the live tiles of the specific app?  There are times when centralization is counterproductive.  This is one of those times.
  • Have tried to get unification to work, hell, I have tried to get tile notifications for the WPCentral app to show on the home screen, neither work at all. So to recap... Worst case - no notifications and no tile notifications.
    Best case - 30 min behind (hardly glance and go Microsoft!!). Along with my Nokia 920, I still carry my iPhone around with me... Notifications for all apps show there!!!