[webkit-dev] Request for position on Badging API

Ryosuke Niwa rniwa at webkit.org
Tue Feb 18 23:14:39 PST 2020

On Tue, Feb 18, 2020 at 4:02 PM Matt Giuca <mgiuca at chromium.org> wrote:

> Thanks for the replies. Folding both Dean and Ryosuke's emails into one.
> On Mon, 17 Feb 2020 at 03:03, Dean Jackson <dino at apple.com> wrote:
>> Not speaking for all of WebKit, and definitely not all of Apple, but I
>> think this seems like a good idea.
>> I'm not sure I get the distinction between app badges and document badges
>> though. I'd also like to see some specification text describing how the
>> browser should ignore multiple set/clear operations executed in rapid
>> succession (e.g. to create a blinking badge) - maybe the limit is one badge
>> operation per minute or something?
> Good suggestion. Filed an issue: https://github.com/WICG/badging/issues/68
> Also, given that the main use case for this would be alerting the user to
>> a notification, it seems like it should be able to link it directly to
>> that. This would provide the ability for a push notification to trigger the
>> badge without ever firing up the page context.
> I'm not sure what you mean by "link directly to that". We've deliberately
> specified this as separate to notifications (since you may or may not want
> the badge to be set without one). If you want to show a notification and a
> badge at the same time, you can use both APIs together. If you want to have
> a push notification set the badge when the service worker runs, you can do
> that (but as has been discussed at length:
> https://github.com/WICG/badging/issues/28, you *can't* currently set a
> badge without a notification from a push message).
> On Mon, 17 Feb 2020 at 03:49, Ryosuke Niwa <rniwa at webkit.org> wrote:
>> For the record, we have two concerns raised internally at Apple:
>>  * The integration of this API with push service worker would require
>> running scripts in order to update the badge. This will pose a serious
>> power consumption issue.
> That isn't a feature of the current proposal. The spec doesn't give
> service worker push any new capabilities that it didn't already have (in
> particular, if the browser requires the push message to show a
> notification, that is still true; you simply cannot set a badge from a push
> message without showing a notification). See
> https://github.com/WICG/badging/issues/28 and
> https://github.com/WICG/badging/blob/master/explainer.md#background-updates
> .
> This is something we've given some thought to. We (Google) would like to
> eventually see it possible to set a badge in the background without a
> notification. But the power consumption and privacy issues are well known,
> and at this stage, it is not being proposed.

Because all background processes (including non-foreground tabs) are
suspend on iOS, this makes this feature pretty much useless. If the user is
currently seeing a website, then there is no need for updating the badge
since the user is already there. On the other hand, if the user isn't
currently seeing the website, then the website' scripts are never gonna run.

 * We don’t want every website to start using this API to increase
>> “engagement”.
> Do you mean as a way of drawing additional attention to itself? Well, the
> setAppBadge API can only be used by installed applications, so that doesn't
> apply to every site the user might visit. And the user agent / OS can
> provide the user with UI to suppress badges on a per-app basis if an app is
> too spammy. The setClientBadge API could be used by any website to draw
> attention, but the user agent should make the badge sufficiently subtle
> that this is no more abusive than a favicon, which can already be used to
> show a pseudo-badge.

Since there is not a concept of installed web apps in Safari on macOS, this
isn't going to work there.

As such, this feature isn't going to work on either platform as currently

- R. Niwa

On Sun, Jan 19, 2020 at 16:27 Matt Giuca <mgiuca at chromium.org> wrote:
>>> Hi WebKit team,
>>> I have previously proposed the Badging API (
>>> https://github.com/WICG/badging) to provide websites with a mechanism
>>> to set a badge (a small dot or number) on the current document's tab, or
>>> for installed applications, on the app icon in the system shelf or home
>>> screen.
>>> Would WebKit / Safari be interested in implementing the API now or in
>>> the future?
>>> We are planning to ship in Chromium soon:
>>> https://groups.google.com/a/chromium.org/g/blink-dev/c/fHc49JNFTAU/m/bJD25Yr7CAAJ
>>> Regards
>>> Matt Giuca
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> webkit-dev mailing list
>>> webkit-dev at lists.webkit.org
>>> https://lists.webkit.org/mailman/listinfo/webkit-dev
>> --
>> - R. Niwa
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