Android

Detailed technical documentation on RudderStack’s Android SDK using Android Studio to send events from your Android device to various destinations.

What is the RudderStack Android SDK?

The RudderStack Android SDK allows you to track event data from your app. It can be easily integrated into your Android application. After integrating this SDK, you will also be able to send the event data to your preferred analytics destination/s such as Google Analytics, Amplitude, and more.

You can check the GitHub codebase if you want to get more hands-on or keen to know the SDK architecture.

Maven Central

SDK Setup Requirements

To set up the RudderStack Android SDK, there are a few prerequisites as mentioned below:

  • You will need to set up a RudderStack Account.

  • Once signed up, your Android source writeKey will appear in the Dashboard, as shown:

Android source WriteKey after adding the source
  • You will also need your Data Plane URL. Simply put, the Data Plane URL is used to connect to the RudderStack backend for processing and routing your events.

To get the Data Plane URL:

  • If you're using the open-source version of RudderStack, you are required to set up your own data plane by installing and setting up RudderStack in your preferred dev environment.

  • If you're using the enterprise version of RudderStack, please contact us for the data plane URL with the email ID used to sign up for RudderStack.

Installing the SDK

As Bintray has a sunset from 1st may, we're moving our SDK to Maven Central". All the versions, 1.0.10 onwards are available in Maven Central only.

We distribute our Android SDK through Maven Central. The recommended and easiest way to add the SDK to your project is through the Android Gradle build system.

Follow these steps:

  • Open your project level build.gradle file, and add the following lines of code:

buildscript {
repositories {
mavenCentral()
}
}
allprojects {
repositories {
mavenCentral()
}
}
  • Then open your app/build.gradle and add the dependency under dependencies as shown below:

implementation 'com.rudderstack.android.sdk:core:1+'
// add the following line if you don't have Gson included already
implementation 'com.google.code.gson:gson:2+'

It is recommended to use the Core Android SDK without any device-mode destination SDKs as you will have a better view on the captured data from the SDK.

Setting Android Permission

Add this line to your AndroidManifest.xml file of your application for internet permission:

<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.INTERNET"/>

We also declare android.permission.BLUETOOTH and android.permission.ACCESS_WIFI_STATE as optional by mentioning required="false" . If we get these permissions, we'll capture the Bluetooth status and the WiFi status of the device and pass it under context.network.

Initializing the RudderStack Client

Import the library on the classes you desire to use RudderClient library

import com.rudderstack.android.sdk.core.*;

Add the following code to the onCreate method in your Application class:

Don't have an Application class? Follow our guide on Adding an Application Class to Your Android Application to add one.

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
val rudderClient = RudderClient.getInstance(
this,
WRITE_KEY,
RudderConfig.Builder()
.withDataPlaneUrl(DATA_PLANE_URL)
.withTrackLifecycleEvents(true)
.withRecordScreenViews(true)
.build()
)
JAVA
RudderClient rudderClient = RudderClient.getInstance(
this,
WRITE_KEY,
new RudderConfig.Builder()
.withDataPlaneUrl(DATA_PLANE_URL)
.withTrackLifecycleEvents(true)
.withRecordScreenViews(true)
.build()
);

We automatically track the following optional events:

  1. Application Installed

  2. Application Updated

  3. Application Opened

  4. Application Backgrounded

You can disable these events using the withTrackLifecycleEvents method and passing false. But it is highly recommended to keep them enabled.

Track

You can record the users' activity through the track method. Every action performed by the user is called an event.

An example of the track event is as shown:

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
rudderClient.track(
"Product Added",
RudderProperty()
.putValue("product_id", "product_001")
)
JAVA
rudderClient.track(
"Product Added",
new RudderProperty()
.putValue("product_id", "product_001")
);

Follow the method signature as below:

Name

Data Type

Required

Description

name

String

Yes

Name of the event you want to track

property

RudderProperty or Map<String, Object>

No

Extra data properties you want to send along with the event

options

RudderOption

No

Extra event options

Identify

We capture deviceId and use that as anonymousId for identifying the user. It helps to track the users across the application installation. To attach more information to the user, you can use the identify method. Once you set the identify information to the user, those will be passed to the successive track or screen calls. To reset the user identification, you can use the reset method.

On the Android devices, the deviceId is assigned during the first boot. It remains consistent across the applications and installs. It changes only after factory reset.

An example identify event is as shown:

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
val traits = RudderTraits()
traits.putBirthday(Date())
traits.putEmail("[email protected]")
traits.putFirstName("First")
traits.putLastName("Last")
traits.putGender("m")
traits.putPhone("5555555555")
val address = RudderTraits.Address()
address.putCity("City")
address.putCountry("USA")
traits.putAddress(address)
traits.put("boolean", Boolean.TRUE)
traits.put("integer", 50)
traits.put("float", 120.4f)
traits.put("long", 1234L)
traits.put("string", "hello")
traits.put("date", Date(System.currentTimeMillis()))
rudderClient.identify("test_user_id", traits, null)
JAVA
RudderTraits traits = new RudderTraits();
traits.putBirthday(new Date());
traits.putEmail("[email protected]");
traits.putFirstName("First");
traits.putLastName("Last");
traits.putGender("m");
traits.putPhone("5555555555");
RudderTraits.Address address = new RudderTraits.Address();
address.putCity("City");
address.putCountry("USA");
traits.putAddress(address);
traits.put("boolean", Boolean.TRUE);
traits.put("integer", 50);
traits.put("float", 120.4f);
traits.put("long", 1234L);
traits.put("string", "hello");
traits.put("date", new Date(System.currentTimeMillis()));
rudderClient.identify("test_user_id", traits, null;

Follow the method signatures below:

Name

Data Type

Required

Description

traits

RudderTraits

Yes

Traits information for the user

options

RudderOption

No

Extra options for the identify event

OR

Name

Data Type

Required

Description

userId

String

Yes

Developer identity for the user

traits

RudderTraits

No

Traits information for user

option

RudderOption

No

Extra options for the identify event

Screen

You can use the screen call to record whenever the user sees a screen on the mobile device. You can also send some extra properties along with this event.

An example of the screen event is as shown:

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
rudderClient.screen(
"MainActivity",
"HomeScreen",
RudderProperty().putValue("foo", "bar"),
null
)
JAVA
rudderClient.screen(
"MainActivity",
"HomeScreen",
new RudderProperty().putValue("foo", "bar"),
null
);

Follow the method signature below:

Name

Data Type

Required

Description

screenName

String

Yes

Name of the screen viewed.

category

String

No

Category of the screen visited, such as HomeScreen, LoginScreen. Useful for tracking multiple Fragment views under a single Activity.

property

RudderProperty

No

Extra property object that you want to pass along with the screen call.

option

RudderOption

No

Extra options to be passed along with screen event.

Group

The group call associates a user to a specific organization. A sample group call for the API is below:

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
rudderClient.group(
"sample_group_id",
RudderTraits().putAge("24")
.putName("Test Group Name")
.putPhone("1234567891")
)
JAVA
rudderClient.group(
"sample_group_id",
new RudderTraits().putAge("24")
.putName("Test Group Name")
.putPhone("1234567891")
);

Follow the method signatures below:

Name

Data Type

Required

Description

groupId

String

Yes

An ID of the organization with which you want to associate your user

traits

RudderTraits

No

Any other property of the organization you want to pass along with the call

options

RudderOption

No

Event level options

We don't persist the traits for the group across the sessions

Alias

The alias call associates the user with a new identification. A sample alias call for the API is below:

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
rudderClient.alias("test_new_id")
JAVA
rudderClient.alias("test_new_id");

Alternatively, you can use the following method signature

Name

Data Type

Required

Description

newId

String

Yes

The new userId you want to assign to the user

options

RudderOption

No

Event level option

We replace the old userId with the newUserId and we persist that identification across the sessions.

Reset

You can use the reset method to clear the persisted traits for the identify call. This is required for Logout operations.

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
rudderClient.reset()
JAVA
rudderClient.reset();

Configuring your RudderStack Client

You can configure your client based on the following parameters using RudderConfig.Builder:

Parameter

Type

Description

Default Value

logLevel

int

Controls how much of the log you want to see from the SDK.

RudderLogger.RudderLogLevel.NONE

dataPlaneUrl

string

URL of your data-plane. Please refer above to see how to fetch the data plane URL.

https://api.rudderlabs.com

flushQueueSize

int

Number of events in a batch request to the server.

30

dbThresholdCount

int

Number of events to be saved in the SQLite database. Once the limit is reached, older events are deleted from the DB.

10000

sleepTimeout

int

Minimum waiting time to flush the events to the server.

10 seconds

configRefreshInterval

int

It will fetch the config from dashboard after this many hours.

2

trackLifecycleEvents

boolean

Whether SDK will capture application life cycle events automatically.

true

recordScreenViews

boolean

Whether SDK will capture screen view events automatically.

false

controlPlaneUrl

string

This parameter should be changed only if you are self-hosting the Control Plane. Check the section Self-Hosted Control Plane below for more information. The SDK will add /sourceConfig along with this URL to fetch the configuration.

https://api.rudderlabs.com

Self-Hosted Control Plane

If you are using a device mode destination like Adjust, Firebase, etc., the Android SDK needs to fetch the required configuration from the Control Plane. If you are using the RudderStack Config Generator to host your own Control Plane, then follow this guide and specify controlPlaneUrl in yourRudderConfig.Builder that points to your hosted source configuration file.

You shouldn't pass the controlPlaneUrl parameter during SDK initialization if you are using the dashboard from https://app.rudderstack.com. This parameter is supported only if you are using our open-source RudderStack Config Generator.

Setting Android Device Token

You can set your device-token for push notification to be sent to the destinations that support Push Notification. We set the token under context.device.token.

Follow the code snippets below:

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
rudderClient.putDeviceToken("your_device_token")
JAVA
rudderClient.putDeviceToken("your_device_token");

Advertisement ID

We collect the advertisementId if it is enabled by the user and the App has the Google Play services Ads SDK embedded in the application. We set the gaid under context.device.advertisementId.

Apart from it, if you want to set the advertisingId by yourself, you can do so using the updateWithAdvertisingId method and passing the advertisingId.

You need to call updateWithAdvertisingId method before calling getInstance

An example of setting the advertisingId is as below

RudderClient.updateWithAdvertisingId(<ADVERTISING_ID>);

Anonymous ID

We use the deviceId as anonymousId by default. You can use the following method to override and use your own anonymousId with the SDK.

You need to call setAnonymousId method before calling getInstance

An example of setting the anonymousId is as below

RudderClient.setAnonymousId(<ANONYMOUS_ID>);

To retrieve the anonymousId you can use the following method:

RudderClient.getAnonymousId();

The method getAnonymousId is available from v1.0.11 onwards.

Enabling / Disabling Events for Specific Destinations

The RudderStack Android SDK allows you to enable or disable event flow to a specific destination or all the destinations to which the source is connected. You can specify these destinations by creating a RudderOption object as shown:

Kotlin
Java
Kotlin
val option = RudderOption()
//default value for `All` is true
option.putIntegration("All", false)
// specifying destination by its display name
option.putIntegration("Google Analytics", true)
option.putIntegration(<DESTINATION DISPLAY NAME>, <boolean>)
// specifying destination by its Factory object
option.putIntegration(AppcenterIntegrationFactory.FACTORY,true);
option.putIntegration(<RudderIntegration.FACTORY>,<boolean>);
Java
RudderOption option = new RudderOption();
// default value for `All` is true
option.putIntegration("All", false);
// specifying destination by its display name
option.putIntegration("Google Analytics", true);
option.putIntegration(<DESTINATION DISPLAY NAME>, <boolean>);
// specifying destination by its Factory object
option.putIntegration(AppcenterIntegrationFactory.FACTORY,true);
option.putIntegration(<RudderIntegration.FACTORY>,<boolean>);

The keyword All in the above snippet represents all the destinations the source is connected to. Its value is set to true by default.

Make sure the destination display name that you pass while specifying the destinations should exactly match the destination name as shown here.

You can pass the destination(s) specified in the above snippet to the SDK in two ways:

1. Passing the destinations while initializing the SDK:

This is helpful when you want to enable/disable sending the events across all the event calls made using the SDK to the specified destination(s).

Kotlin
Java
Kotlin
var rudderClient = RudderClient.getInstance(
this,
<WRITE_KEY>,
RudderConfig.Builder()
.withDataPlaneUrl(<DATA_PLANE_URL>)
.withLogLevel(RudderLogger.RudderLogLevel.DEBUG)
.withTrackLifecycleEvents(false)
.withRecordScreenViews(false)
.build(),
option // passing the rudderoption object containing the list of destination(s) you specified
)
Java
RudderClient client = RudderClient.getInstance(
this,
<WRITE_KEY>,
new RudderConfig.Builder()
.withEndPointUri(<END_POINT_URL>)
.build(),
option // passing the rudderoption object containing the list of destination(s) you specified
);

2. Passing the destinations while making any event call:

This approach is helpful when you want to enable/disable sending only a particular event to the specified destination(s) or if you want to override the specified destinations passed with the SDK initialization for a particular event.

Kotlin
Java
Kotlin
rudderClient.track(
"Product Added",
RudderProperty()
.putValue("product_id", "product_001"),
option // passing the rudderoption object containing the list of destination you specified
)
Java
rudderClient.track(
"Product Added",
new RudderProperty()
.putValue("product_id", "product_001"),
option // passing the rudderoption object containing the list of destination(s) you specified
);

If you specify the destinations both while initializing the SDK as well as while making an event call, then the destinations specified at the event level only will be considered.

External ID

You can pass your custom userId along with standard userId in your identify calls. We add those values under context.externalId. The following code snippet shows a way to add externalId to your identify request.

rudderClient.identify(
"sampleUserId",
RudderTraits().putFirstName("First Name"),
RudderOption()
.putExternalId("brazeExternalId", "some_external_id")
)

Debugging

If you run into any issues regarding the RudderStack Android SDK, you can turn on the VERBOSE or DEBUG logging to find out what the issue is. To turn on the logging, change your RudderClient initialization to the following:

Kotlin
Java
Kotlin
val rudderClient: RudderClient = RudderClient.getInstance(
this,
YOUR_WRITE_KEY,
RudderConfig.Builder()
.withDataPlaneUrl(DATA_PLANE_URL)
.withLogLevel(RudderLogger.RudderLogLevel.DEBUG)
.build()
)
Java
RudderClient rudderClient = RudderClient.getInstance(
this,
YOUR_WRITE_KEY,
new RudderConfig.Builder()
.withDataPlaneUrl(DATA_PLANE_URL)
.withLogLevel(RudderLogger.RudderLogLevel.DEBUG)
.build()
);

FAQs

Do I need to add anything to my progaurd-rules?

If you are facing any issue regarding even delivery in production environment, add the following line in your progaurd rule.

-keep class com.rudderstack.android.** { *; }

What is the Android version required to set up the RudderStack Android SDK?

We currently support API 14: Android 4.0 (IceCreamSandwich) or higher.

I don't have an Application class to initialize my RudderStack client. What do I do?

Please follow our guide on How to Add an Application Class to Your Android App to add an Application class.

How do I set the Android permissions?

Please refer to the Setting the Android Permission section above to do this.

Can I use the library with Maven?

Yes, you can use the library with maven.

<dependency>
<groupId>com.rudderstack.android.sdk</groupId>
<artifactId>core</artifactId>
<version>latest_version</version>
<type>pom</type>
</dependency>

How do I check whether a specific event is getting fired or not?

You can try searching in the Logcat using the following command once you set the logLevel to VERBOSE

adb logcat -s RudderSDK:V \
-v tag -e "EventRepository: dump: message:"

How do I get the user traits after making the identify call?

You can get the user traits after making an identify call as shown:

Kotlin
JAVA
Kotlin
val traits = rudderClient!!.getRudderContext().getTraits()
JAVA
Map<String,Object> traitsObj = rudderClient.getRudderContext().getTraits();

Contact Us

In case of any queries, you can always contact us, or open an issue on our GitHub Issues page in case of any discrepancy.