Channel Types

We recommend you to understand the following terminology before proceeding with the rest of this guide.


Open Channel

Open Channel is a public chat. In this channel type, anyone can enter and participate in the chat without permission. A single channel can handle thousands of simultaneous users like Twitch-style public chat.


Group Channel

Group Channel is a private chat. A user may join the chat only through an invitation by another user who is already a member of the chatroom.

  • Distinct property : A channel with the Distinct property turned on is always reused for the same members. If a new member is invited, or if a member leaves the channel, then the Distinct property is disabled automatically.

  • 1-on-1 messaging: 1-on-1 messaging is a private channel between two users. You can turn on the Distinct property for the channel to reuse a channel for the same members like Twitter Direct Messages-style 1-on-1 chatting.

  • Group messaging: Group messaging is a private channel among multiple users. You can invite up to hundreds of members into a group channel like WhatsApp-style closed group chat.


Open Channel vs. Group Channel

Type Open Channel Group Channel
Access control Public Invitation required
Class name OpenChannel GroupChannel
Number of members Over a few thousand Less than a few hundred
How to create SendBird Dashboard / Platform API / Client SDK Client SDK / Platform API
Operators Supported N/A
User ban Supported N/A
User mute Supported N/A
Freeze channel Supported N/A
Push notifications N/A Supported
Unread counts N/A Supported
Read receipts N/A Supported
Typing indicators N/A Supported