Warning: The Sync API has been deprecated. Learn more.

Dropbox offers native SDKs for iOS, OS X and Android. This page includes instructions on how to download and set up SDKs for each platform, as well as links to SDKs provided by the community for other environments.

Before building an app using the Sync API, you'll need to create an app with the App folder or File type permission in the App Console (Full Dropbox permission is not supported with the Sync API). Visit the developer guide for more information on the different types of permissions.

Android SDK

The Sync API requires Android API 10 or later.

Installing the SDK

Download the Sync API Android SDK linked above. The necessary libraries are located in the libs directory of the SDK package. The .jar file in the libs directory contains the Java classes which make up the Android SDK. The subdirectories contain the native components, built for each supported Android platform. You can safely omit some of them if you know which platforms your app needs to support ("armeabi" is the most common).

Adding the SDK to an Android Studio project

The following instructions apply to version 1.1.0 of Android Studio and version 1.1.0 of the Android tools plugin for Gradle. If you're using a different version, you may need to modify some of the steps.

  1. Within Android Studio, switch to the "project view".
  2. From the libs directory in the downloaded SDK, drag dropbox-sync-sdk-android.jar into your project's app/libs directory.
  3. Right-click on dropbox-sync-sdk-android.jar and choose "Add as library". Click "OK" on the dialog that appears.
  4. Make a new directory in your project under app/src/main called jniLibs. From the SDK, drag armeabi, armeabi-v7a, mips, and x86 into the new jniLibs directory.

Once you've added the SDK to your project, jump to the "Required changes to AndroidManifest.xml" section to complete the setup.

Adding the SDK to an Eclipse project

  1. Copy the contents of the libs directory of the Android SDK package into the libs directory of your project.
  2. In Eclipse, open the context menu on your project and click Refresh.

Optional: Installing the Javadocs

To allow Eclipse to display Javadoc documentation for SDK classes, you can create a file in your project's libs directory containing a path to the javadoc directory of the Android SDK package as follows.
# Replace the path below with the correct path on your system

Read on for other changes you need to make to your project before using the SDK.

Required changes to AndroidManifest.xml

The Sync API needs permission to access the Internet. Additionally, a few SDK components need to be published so that Android can find them. Here are the two snippets to add to your AndroidManifest.xml.

Required permissions (inside the <manifest> element).
<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.INTERNET" />
<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.ACCESS_NETWORK_STATE" />
Activities and Services (inside the <application> element).
Be sure to replace the APP_KEY below with your real app key.
<activity android:name="" />
  android:launchMode="singleTask" >
    <data android:scheme="db-APP_KEY" />
    <action android:name="android.intent.action.VIEW" />
    <category android:name="android.intent.category.BROWSABLE" />
    <category android:name="android.intent.category.DEFAULT" />
  android:label="Dropbox Sync" />

Example apps

If you want to see the Sync API in action, check out the examples directory in the SDK bundle. There you can find a simple "Hello Dropbox" example that demonstrates the code in this tutorial, as well as a note-taking app that uses the Sync API to save notes to Dropbox and alerts you if the notes are updated. This app will also sync notes with the notes example included in the SDKs for other platforms. Here's how to build and run a sample app.

  1. In Android Studio, select File → Import Project.
  2. Browse to the example app you'd like to try.
  3. Add the required SDK libraries to the new project as described above.
  4. The Notes example also requires the Android Support library.
    From the SDK Manager window, select the Android Support Repository item.
  5. Click the Install packages... button. After downloading, the tool installs the Support Library files to your existing Android SDK directory. The library files are located in the following subdirectory of your SDK: /extras/android/support/ directory.

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