What is Background Sync?
Background Sync is a web API that enables developers to delay actions until the user has stable connectivity. This is useful for ensuring that whatever the user wants to send, is actually sent. It also allows websites to schedule a sync when an internet connection is available, ensuring a superior user experience even when the connection is intermittent.
How Does Background Sync Work?
Background Sync works by registering a one-off sync event with the service worker. When the browser regains network connectivity, it fires the event. The service worker then listens for this event and carries out the necessary actions like sending requests to the server. This process happens in the background, hence the name ‘Background Sync’.
Key Components of Background Sync
- Service Worker: A script that the browser runs in the background separate from a web page, opening the door to features which don’t need a web page or user interaction.
- Sync Event: This is the event that gets triggered when the network connectivity is regained. It is used to carry out the necessary actions.
Implementing Background Sync
Implementing Background Sync involves registering a service worker, then registering a sync event within that service worker. When the user performs an action that needs to be synced with the server, you can ‘tag’ this action. If the action fails due to network issues, the browser will keep trying to perform the action every time network connectivity is regained, until it succeeds.
Benefits of Using Background Sync
- Improved User Experience: The user’s actions are stored and not lost even if the network connection is unavailable or unreliable. They get synced when connection is stable.
- Efficiency: It allows web applications to be more robust and resilient to network issues, giving users a smoother experience.
- Reliability: It ensures important information is not lost due to network issues, making web applications more reliable.
In conclusion, Background Sync is a powerful tool in the hands of web developers, providing a means to ensure a seamless user experience even in the face of network interruptions. It is a testament to the ongoing evolution of web development, offering robust, efficient, and reliable web applications to users.