Local servers (also referred to as "Local server multiplayer" or "Internal servers") allow multiple Players on the same Wi-Fi network to play in the same world. While Local server multiplayer is of great simplicity to use, it is also very restrictive. Some features which may be available on external servers, but are not available on local servers are:
- Multiplayer with Players not on the hosting Player's Wi-Fi network
- Banning/kicking Players
- Ability to play on host world without host Player connection
Additionally a Microsoft account won't be needed to play through local.
External Servers are servers which are not directly attached to the host's network. Depending on the configuration of the server, worlds may be directly stored on the server, allowing it to host other Players without the hosting Player's connection. This type of server allows for the use of any extensions or modifications (also commonly referred to as "Mods") to Minecraft Pocket Edition which are compatible with the hosting server's configuration. Lifeboat and Mineplex are both examples of external servers.
After Update 1.2, most external severs require a Microsoft account.
External servers offer limited gameplay as opposed to multiplayer or realms, due to the re-implementation of the game for that server. This usually is seen related to mob handling and/or technical features like redstone.
Minecraft Pocket Edition Realms
Realms are official, subscription-based multiplayer servers which can host up to 10 players. Realms can be managed by the owner, similarly to how server owners can manage personally hosted servers.
Certain apps which are downloadable from app stores allow Players to play locally on the same world over Bluetooth connection between devices. This can be useful for times when there is not a Wi-Fi network available, however, Bluetooth has a limited ability to transfer data, and the signal is often easily disrupted. As a result, disconnection can be common, and it may be annoying to some.
On rare occasions, Players may encounter other players who grief, blackmail, hack, spam, or use inappropriate skins/language on a server. Players can deal with the situation by reporting them to server Admins.