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Extending the Image Pipeline

Android supports many image formats out of the box, however there are also plenty of formats it does not (e.g. GIF, SVG, TIFF, etc.)

Fortunately, ImageLoaders support pluggable components to add new cache layers, new data types, new fetching behavior, new image encodings, or otherwise overwrite the base image loading behavior. Coil's image pipeline consists of four main parts: Interceptors, Mappers, Fetchers, and Decoders.

Custom components must be added to the ImageLoader when constructing it through its ComponentRegistry:

val imageLoader = ImageLoader.Builder(context)
    .componentRegistry {


Interceptors allow you to observe, transform, short circuit, or retry requests to an ImageLoader's image engine. For example, you can add a custom cache layer like so:

class CustomCacheInterceptor(
    private val context: Context,
    private val cache: LruCache<String, Drawable>
) : Interceptor {

    override suspend fun intercept(chain: Interceptor.Chain): ImageResult {
        val value = cache.get(
        if (value != null) {
            return SuccessResult(
                drawable = value.bitmap.toDrawable(context),
                request = chain.request,
                metadata = TODO()
        return chain.proceed(chain.request)

Interceptors are an advanced feature that let you wrap an ImageLoader's image pipeline with custom logic. Their design is heavily based on OkHttp's Interceptor interface.

See Interceptor for more information.


Mappers allow you to add support for custom data types. For instance, say we get this model from our server:

data class Item(
    val id: Int,
    val imageUrl: String,
    val price: Int,
    val weight: Double

We could write a custom mapper to map it to its URL, which will be handled later in the pipeline:

class ItemMapper : Mapper<Item, String> {
    override fun map(data: Item) = data.imageUrl

After registering it when building our ImageLoader (see above), we can safely load an Item:

val request = ImageRequest.Builder(context)

See Mapper for more information.


Fetchers translate data into either a BufferedSource or a Drawable.

See Fetcher for more information.


Decoders read a BufferedSource as input and return a Drawable. Use this interface to add support for custom file formats (e.g. GIF, SVG, TIFF, etc.).

See Decoder for more information.


Decoders are responsible for closing the BufferedSource when finished. This allows custom decoders to return a Drawable while still reading the source. This can be useful to support file types such as progressive JPEG where there is incremental information to show.