I'd like to be able to prompt my app to open a link when user clicks on an URL of a given pattern instead of allowing the browser to open it. This could be when the user is on a web page in the browser or in an email client or within a WebView in a freshly-minted app.

For example, click on a YouTube link from anywhere in the phone and you'll be given the chance to open the YouTube app.

How do I achieve this for my own app?

Solution 1

Use an android.intent.action.VIEW of category android.intent.category.BROWSABLE.

From Romain Guy's Photostream app's AndroidManifest.xml,


        <!-- ... -->            

            <action android:name="android.intent.action.VIEW" />
            <category android:name="android.intent.category.DEFAULT" />
            <category android:name="android.intent.category.BROWSABLE" />
            <data android:scheme="http"
                  android:pathPrefix="/photos/" />
            <data android:scheme="http"
                  android:pathPrefix="/photos/" />

Once inside you're in the activity, you need to look for the action, and then do something with the URL you've been handed. The Intent.getData() method gives you a Uri.

    final Intent intent = getIntent();
    final String action = intent.getAction();

    if (Intent.ACTION_VIEW.equals(action)) {
        final List<String> segments = intent.getData().getPathSegments();
        if (segments.size() > 1) {
            mUsername = segments.get(1);

It should be noted, however, that this app is getting a little bit out of date (1.2), so you may find there are better ways of achieving this.

Solution 2

There are some libraries parse parameters from url automatically.

such as


The later one is wrote by me. Which can parse parameters to given type, not always String.


@Router(value = "main/:id" intExtra = "id")
int id = getIntent().getInt("id", 0);

Solution 3

private class MyWebViewClient extends WebViewClient {
    public boolean shouldOverrideUrlLoading(WebView view, String url) {

        if (url.indexOf("pattern") != -1) {
            // do something
            return false;
        } else {

        return true;