Vision SDK for Android


To use the Vision SDK you'll need to configure the credentials and add the SDK as a dependency.

Configure credentials

Before installing the SDK, you will need to gather the appropriate credentials. The SDK requires two pieces of sensitive information from your Mapbox account. If you don't have a Mapbox account: sign up and navigate to your Account page. You'll need:

  • A public access token: From your account's tokens page, you can either copy your default public token or click the Create a token button to create a new public token.
  • A secret access token with the Downloads:Read scope.
    1. From your account's tokens page, click the Create a token button.
    2. From the token creation page, give your token a name and make sure the box next to the Downloads:Read scope is checked.
    3. Click the Create token button at the bottom of the page to create your token.
    4. The token you've created is a secret token, which means you will only have one opportunity to copy it somewhere secure.

You should not expose these access tokens in publicly-accessible source code where unauthorized users might find them. Instead, you should store them somewhere safe on your computer and take advantage of Gradle properties to make sure they're only added when your app is compiled. Once this configuration step has been completed, you will be able to reference your credentials in other parts of your app.

Configure your secret token

To avoid exposing your secret token, add it as an environment variable:

  1. Find or create a file in your Gradle user home folder. The folder can be found at «USER_HOME»/.gradle. Once you have found or created the file, its path should be «USER_HOME»/.gradle/ You can read more about Gradle properties in the official Gradle documentation.
  2. Add your secret token your file:

Configure your public token

There are many ways to configure your public access token. Many of the examples and code snippets on this site assume your token is stored in a file in your project with other string values. If you would like to manage your public access token this way, open your project's R.strings.xml file and add the following string resource:

<string name="mapbox_access_token">MAPBOX_ACCESS_TOKEN</string>

If you ever need to rotate your access token, you will need to update the token value in your R.strings.xml file.

Configure permissions

You can use the Manifest merge feature to reduce the need to include any SDK requirements in your application's manifest file. You'll need to add either the Fine or Coarse location permission if you plan to display a user's location on the map or get the user's location information. The user location permission should also be checked during runtime using the PermissionsManager.

<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_FINE_LOCATION" />
Access token best practices

Learn how to keep access tokens private in mobile apps.

Add the dependency

Mapbox provides the Vision SDK via Maven.

To add the Vision SDK as a dependency, you will need to configure your build to download the Vision SDK from Mapbox directly. This requires a valid username and password.

  1. Open your project in Android Studio.

  2. Open up your module-level build.gradle file.

  3. The Vision SDK uses Java 8 features. To enable Java 8 in your project, add the following compileOptions:

    android {
      // Configure only for each module that uses Java 8
      // language features (either in its source code or
      // through dependencies).
      compileOptions {
        sourceCompatibility JavaVersion.VERSION_1_8
        targetCompatibility JavaVersion.VERSION_1_8
      // For Kotlin projects
      kotlinOptions {
        jvmTarget = "1.8"
  4. Make sure that your project's minSdkVersion is at API 23 or higher.

    android {
      defaultConfig {
          minSdkVersion 23
  5. Add Vision dependencies under dependencies:

    dependencies {
      implementation ""
      implementation ""
      implementation ""
  6. Open up your project-level build.gradle file. Declare the Mapbox Downloads API's v2/releases/maven endpoint in the repositories block. To download the Vision SDK, you must authenticate your request with a valid username and password. In the previous section, you added your secret token as a password in the file in your Gradle user home folder.

    allprojects {
      repositories {
        maven {
          url ''
          authentication {
          credentials {
            // Do not change the username below.
            // This should always be `mapbox` (not your username). 
            username = "mapbox"
            // Use the secret token you stored in as the password
            password =['MAPBOX_DOWNLOADS_TOKEN'] ?: ""
  7. Because you've edited your Gradle files, Android Studio will ask you whether you want to sync the Gradle files. You can sync now.

SDK configuration

After downloading or importing the SDK into your project, you have to configure it.

Create an application

Create a new class, initialize VisionManager, and pass it the public Mapbox access token you added to your strings.xml file:

public class VisionApp extends Application {
public void onCreate() {
VisionManager.init(this, getResources().getString(R.string.mapbox_access_token));

Configure permissions

The Mapbox Vision SDK requires several permissions in addition to location permission required by other Mapbox SDKs. Add the following permissions to your AndroidManifest.xml file:

<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.INTERNET" />
<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_NETWORK_STATE" />
<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.CAMERA" />
<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.WRITE_EXTERNAL_STORAGE" />
<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_FINE_LOCATION" />
<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_COARSE_LOCATION" />

These should all be granted before calling the SDK.

Add VisionView to the activity layout (optional)

VisionView will render the image that was produced by Vision SDK. You can add it with the following snippet:

  app:visualization_mode="detection" />

app:visualization_mode specifies what will be rendered on VisionView: clear video source, segmentation, or detections.

Lifecycle methods

Call lifecycle methods of VisionManager. To listen for events that Vision SDK produces, pass an instance of VisionEventsListener to the VisionManager.

protected void onResume() {
protected void onPause() {

Local testing setup

Read more about setting up your development environment for testing the capabilities of the Vision SDK in the Testing and development guide.

Vehicle setup

After installing the framework, you will need to set up the device in the vehicle. Some things to consider when choosing and setting up a mount:

  • Generally, shorter length mounts will vibrate less. Mounting to your windshield or to the dashboard are both options.
  • Place the phone near or behind your rearview mirror. Note that your local jurisdiction may have limits on where mounts may be placed.
  • Make sure the phone’s camera view is unobstructed (you will be able to tell with any of the video screens open).