Skip to main content

Group chat tutorial with React Native

This tutorial will guide you through implementing group chat functionality in your XMTP inbox, covering creation, message sending, streaming, and member management.

📥 Need a quick reference? Check out this GitHub repo: group-chat

Installation Steps


  • Node.js
  • npm or Yarn
  • React Native CLI
  • Xcode (for iOS)

1. Initialize react native project

If you haven't already created a React Native project, start by initializing one:

npx react-native init xmtprn

2. Install expo modules

Install the latest Expo modules:

npx install-expo-modules@latest

3. Install XMTP react native sdk

Install the XMTP React Native SDK using npm:

yarn install @xmtp/react-native-sdk

4. Update podfile for ios

Update the Podfile to set the minimum iOS platform. Open the Podfile in your iOS directory and modify the platform line:

platform :ios, '16.0'

5. Update xcode target

Ensure your Xcode project's target is updated to iOS 16.0 or higher.

6. Add Babel plugin

Install the Babel plugin required for the XMTP SDK:

npm add @babel/plugin-proposal-export-namespace-from

7. Configure babel

Update your Babel configuration. Open your babel.config.js and add the plugin:

module.exports = {
presets: ["module:@react-native/babel-preset"],
plugins: ["@babel/plugin-proposal-export-namespace-from"],

8. Install ios pods

Navigate to the iOS directory and install the necessary pods:

cd ios && pod install && cd ..

9. Start the application

Finally, start your React Native application:

npm run ios


Creating a group chat

To create a group chat, you can use the GroupChat class. When a user initiates a new group chat, you should collect the participants' addresses and create a new instance of GroupChat.

const createGroupChat = participants => {
const groupChat = await client.conversations.newGroup([addresses]);
selectConversation(groupChat); // Assuming you have a method to select the current conversation

Loading all group chats


Remember to syncGroups() chats to ensure you have the latest data.

To load conversations including group chats, you can modify the ListConversations component to fetch and display both direct and group conversations. Assuming your backend or SDK supports a .list() method that can filter for group chats, you would integrate it as follows:

useEffect(() => {
const fetchConversations = async () => {
//First fetch new groups from the network
await client.conversations.syncGroups();
//Get groups from local DB
const allGroups = await client.conversations.listGroups();

}, []);

Sending a message in a group chat

To send a message in a group chat, you can use the sendMessage method of the GroupChat class. Ensure you check if the current conversation is a group chat before sending the message.

const handleSendMessage = async (newMessage) => {
if (!newMessage.trim()) {
alert("Empty message");
if (group && group.version === "GROUP") {
await group.send(newMessage);
} else if (group && group.peerAddress) {
// Handle sending a direct message

Loading group chat messages

Here's a simplified example of how you might use group.messages() to load and display messages from a group chat:

Group chats are currently per installation

As of now, group chats in XMTP are specific to each installation. This means that while you can access your group chat conversations across different devices, the historical messages within those chats might not automatically appear. Currently, each group chat's message history is tied to the device where it was initiated. As a result, there is no automatic syncing of message history across devices. When you sign in on a new device, you will see existing group chat conversations but will only receive new messages from that point forward. We are actively working on enhancing this feature to improve your experience with group conversations.

useEffect(() => {
const loadGroupMessages = async () => {
if (conversation && conversation.version === "GROUP") {
try {
// Assuming `conversation` is an instance of a GroupChat
// Fetch the latest 20 messages from the group chat
const messages = await conversation.messages();
} catch (error) {
console.error("Failed to load group messages:", error);
} finally {

}, [conversation]);

Listening for new messages

To stream messages from a group chat, you can use the streamMessages method. This method should be called when the group chat is selected to ensure real-time message updates.

useEffect(() => {
if (conversation.version === "GROUP") {
const startMessageStream = async () => {
conversation.streamGroupMessages((message, includeGroups = true) => {
setMessages((prevMessages) => [...prevMessages, message]);
}, [conversation]);

Manage group chat members


Remember to sync() chats to ensure you have the latest data.

To add or remove members from a group chat, you can use the addMembers and removeMember methods provided by the GroupChat class. Adding a Member

const addMemberToGroupChat = memberAddress => {
if (selectedConversation.version === 'GROUP') {
//Update the member
//First fetch latest data from the network
await selectedConversation.sync();
//Update state
setMembers(await selectedConversation.memberAddresses());

Removing a Member

const removeMemberFromGroupChat = memberAddress => {
if (selectedConversation.version === 'GROUP') {
//Update the member
//First fetch latest data from the network
await selectedConversation.sync();
//Update state
setMembers(await selectedConversation.memberAddresses());

Get member addresses

const getGroupMemberAddresses = () => {
if (selectedConversation.version === 'GROUP') {
//First fetch latest data from the network
await selectedConversation.sync();
//Get member addresses
const memberAddresses = await selectedConversation.memberAddresses();
console.log('Group Member Addresses:', memberAddresses);
return memberAddresses;
} else {
console.log('Not a group chat.');
return [];

Note on conversations and messages in group chats

It's important to note that all the features and methods described in the Conversations and Messages documentation are fully applicable to group chats as well. This includes starting new conversations, checking if an address is on the network, sending messages, and listing existing conversations. XMTP design ensures that you can manage group chats with the same ease and flexibility as one-on-one conversations.

Was the information on this page helpful?
powered by XMTP