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Plugin Development Workflow

With the new plugin created, you can begin implementing functionality across a variety of platforms.

Implementing a New Function

Each plugin comes with some TypeScript files that provide typing to TypeScript consumers of your plugin.

Starting with the TypeScript interface is a good way to build out the API for your plugin. For example, here’s the default interface for our Plugin located in src/definitions.ts:

declare module '@capacitor/core' {
  interface PluginRegistry {
    Echo: EchoPlugin;

export interface EchoPlugin {
  echo(options: { value: string }): Promise<{ value: string }>;

To implement new functionality in your plugin, begin by defining a new function in the exported interface:

export interface EchoPlugin {
  echo(options: { value: string }): Promise<{ value: string }>;
  openMap(location: { latitude: number; longitude: number }): Promise<void>;

Implement the web implementation in src/web.ts:

async openMap(location: { latitude: number, longitude: number}): Promise<void> {
  // logic here

To compile the plugin, navigate into the plugin directory then run:

$ npm run build

Implement Android functionality in android/src/main/[nested folders]/

public void openMap(PluginCall call) {
  Double latitude = call.getDouble("latitude");
  Double longitude = call.getDouble("longitude");

  // more logic

Implement iOS functionality in ios/Plugin/Plugin.swift:

@objc func openMap(_ call: CAPPluginCall) {
  let latitude = call.getString("latitude")
  let longitude = call.getNumber("longitude")

  // more logic

Remember to export the plugin to Capacitor (to make it aware of the plugin) on iOS and Android.

Local Testing

To test the plugin locally while developing it, link the plugin folder to your app project using the npm link command.

First, within the plugin folder, run:

$ npm link

Then, within the project that will test the plugin, run:

$ npm link plugin-name
$ npm install plugin-name

The project’s package.json file now shows the plugin package link in the dependencies list:

"my-plugin": "file:my-plugin",

Finally, run npx cap sync to make the native projects aware of your plugin. If it was detected correctly, it will print something similar to:

Found 1 Capacitor plugin for android: my-plugin (0.0.1)

Unlinking the Plugin

Once you’re done with local testing, be sure to unlink the plugin. Otherwise, subsequent npm installs will install the local plugin, not the published version on npm (assuming you publish it).

First, run npm unlink --no-save plugin-name in the app project folder.

Next, run npm unlink in the plugin folder.


Whenever you are ready to publish your plugin, just use:

npm publish

This will build the JS portion of your plugin and publish the rest of your plugin files to npm.

Your package can now be installed using npm install your-plugin in any Capacitor app.

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