Firebase Remote Config Quickstart

The Firebase Remote Config iOS quickstart app demonstrates using Remote Config to define user-facing text in an iOS app.


This is a simple example of using Remote Config to override in-app default values by defining service-side parameter values in the Firebase console. This example demonstrates a small subset of the capabilities of Firebase Remote Config. To learn more about how you can use Firebase Remote Config in your app, see Firebase Remote Config Introduction.

Getting started

  1. Add Firebase to your iOS Project.
  2. Create a Remote Config project for the quickstart sample, defining the parameter values and parameter keys used by the sample.
  3. Run the sample on a supported device or simulator. Like Remote Config, this quickstart supports iOS and macOS (via MacCatalyst). Deploy to a supported platform by choosing a destination in Xcode (control + shift + 0).
  4. Change one or more parameter values in the Firebase Console (the value of topLabelKey, typedRecipeKey, and/or bottomLabelKey). This is discussed in detail in the next section!
  5. Tap Fetch & Activate Config in the app to fetch new parameter values and see the resulting change in the app.

Configuring the Quickstart with Remote Config

The Top Label - Configuring user-facing text

When you open the quickstart, you'll notice a label that greets you near the top of the display. Remote config is an excellent choice for configuring user-facing text so let's configure this label! Go to the Firebase Console and navigate to the remote config tab. Add a parameter with topLabelKey for the Parameter Key. For the Default Value, enter whatever text you would like! Make these changes live by clicking Publish Changes in the top right corner of the console. Switch back to the quickstart app and tap Fetch & Activate Config. The top label should update with the new value you set in the console!

Recipe View - Configuring Complex entities using JSON

Imagine your are building an app where each day, you display a "Recipe of the Day" to your users. Rather than configure lots of individual config keys and values, we can group a recipe's data together in one JSON object.

In this quickstart, we provide you with a folder of JSON files called JSON Recipes. Copy one on the recipes and navigate to the Remote Config tab of the Firebase Console. Let's add a parameter for the recipe. For the Parameter Key, enter typedRecipeKey and for the value, click the {} button on the right of the Default Value text box. Paste the JSON recipe you copied earlier into this box and click Save. To make these changes live so our app can fetch them, click Publish Changes in the top right corner of the console.

Now that there is a recipe on to be fetched. Tap Fetch & Activate Config and the recipe you entered on the Firebase console will display on the device!

The Bottom Label - Defining platform and locale-specific content

You can add remote config values that will take effect based on certain conditions. Let's experiment with this by adding another remote config parameter. For the Parameter Key, enter bottomLabelKey and for the value, click the Add value for condition button. We encourage you to explore the remote config's capabilities by adding and publishing values that apply for certain conditions. For instance, maybe you want to display a special deal in specific regions of the world or at a certain date and time.

For more info on what you can do with remote config, checkout out this Firebase article.

Best practices

This section provides some additional information about how the quickstart example sets in-app default parameter values and fetches values from the Remote Config service.

In-app default parameter values

In-app default values are set using a plist file with the setDefaultsFromPlistFileName method in this example, but you can also set in-app default values inline using the other setDefaults methods of the FIRRemoteConfig class.

Then, you can override only those values that you need to change from the Firebase console. This lets you use Remote Config for any default value that you might want to override in the future, without the need to set all of those values in the Firebase console.

Fetch values from the Remote Config service

When an app calls fetchWithExpirationDuration:completionHandler, updated parameter values are fetched from the Remote Config service if either

  • the last successful fetch occurred more than 12 hours ago, or
  • a value less than 43200 (the number of seconds in 12 hours) is specified for TimeInterval.

Otherwise, cached parameter values are used.

Fetched values are cached locally, but not immediately activated. To activate fetched values so that they take effect, call the activateFetched method. In the quickstart sample app, you call this method from the UI by tapping Fetch & Activate Config.

You can also create a Remote Config Setting to enable developer mode, but you must remove this setting before distributing your app. Fetching Remote Config data from the service is normally limited to a few requests per hour. By enabling developer mode, you can make many more requests per hour, so you can test your app with different Remote Config parameter values during development.


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