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Out of curiosity, if a user installs Android without Google Apps or APIs and then installs an app that includes Firebase analytics, will the analytics function? Will the app still send something to Firebase, or will it open an empty connection, or will communication be cut off?

To word this another way, is it the Google apps (Play Services, service frameworks, etc.) that open a connection to Firebase, or is it the app itself that does so? Or, does this vary from app to app?

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As evident from these FAQs:

  • I don't want to use other Firebase products (such as Analytics).

Google Analytics for Firebase is enabled by default to provide the full range of FCM features. However, it can be disabled. The FCM SDK's only hard dependency is Google Play Services (which was also a dependency in GCM).

The code which creates connection to Firebase servers is part of Play Services. Apps make use of Google APIs to use that code. Without GApps none of Google Mobile Services will work and the apps heavily depending on those will refuse to start or may keep crashing. Developers can explain better.

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    As an Android developer, I can confirm this: the user may only need to sideload new-ish Google Play Services to make Firebase works (because GPS SDK will also check the GPS version on the device and will not work with old version). – Andrew T. Oct 24 '19 at 8:40

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