Tools for creating powerful, asynchronously-loaded React components

Usage no npm install needed!

<script type="module">
  import shopifyReactAsync from 'https://cdn.skypack.dev/@shopify/react-async';



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Tools for creating powerful, asynchronously-loaded React components.


$ yarn add @shopify/react-async



createAsyncComponent is a function for creating components that are loaded asynchronously on initial mount. However, the resulting component does more than just help you split up your application along component lines; it also supports customized rendering for loading and errors, and creates additional hooks and components for smartly preloading the component and its dependencies. Best of all, in conjunction with the Babel and Webpack plugins provided by @shopify/async, you can easily extract the bundles needed to render your application during server side rendering.

To start, import the createAsyncComponent function. The simplest use of this function requires just a load function, which returns a promise for a component:

import {createAsyncComponent} from '@shopify/react-async';

const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),

This function returns a component that accepts the same props as the original one.

Preload, prefetch, and keep fresh

createAsyncComponent also adds a few static members that are themselves components: Preload, Prefetch, and KeepFresh. Likewise, it provides a set of hooks, which allow for more complex preloading use-cases.

const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),

// All of these are available:
<MyComponent />

<MyComponent.Preload />
<MyComponent.Prefetch />
<MyComponent.KeepFresh />


By default, all of these special hooks and components will preload the assets for the asynchronously-imported components. However, you can provide additional logic to perform with the usePreload, usePrefetch, and useKeepFresh options to createAsyncComponent:

const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),
  usePrefetch: () => {
    const networkCache = useContext(MyNetworkCache);
    return () => networkCache.preload('/component/data/endpoint');

// Now prefetches the component assets, and performs the custom prefetch
<MyComponent.Prefetch />;

// Returns a function that will do all of the above, but allows you to run
// it at a specific time
const prefetch = MyComponent.usePrefetch();

While you can supply whatever logic you like for these, we recommend that you use them for the following purposes:

  • Preload: loading resources that will be used by the component
  • Prefetch: loading resources and data that will be used by the component
  • KeepFresh: loading resources and data that will be used by the component, and keeping data up to date

If you want arguments for your usePreload, usePrefetch, or useKeepFresh hooks, simply specify them in the matching option for that component. These options must be some object type, and will then be used as expected arguments to the hook, and expected props for the component.

const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),
  usePrefetch: ({id}: {id: string}) => (
    const networkCache = useContext(MyNetworkCache);
    return () => networkCache.preload(`/data/for/${id}`);

// This is a type error, we need an `id` option/ prop!
<MyComponent.Prefetch />;

// Much better!
<MyComponent.Prefetch id="123" />;
MyComponent.usePrefetch({id: '123'});

This system is designed to work well with our @shopify/react-graphql package. Simply create an async GraphQL query using that library, and then usePrefetch, usePreload, and useKeepFresh that component alongside the React component itself:

import {
  // `usePreload`, `usePrefetch`, and `useKeepFresh` are convenience hooks
  // that will just call `AsyncComponentType.useX`.
} from '@shopify/react-async';
import {createAsyncQueryComponent} from '@shopify/react-graphql';

const MyQuery = createAsyncQueryComponent({
  load: () =>
    import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyQuery' */ './graphql/MyQuery.graphql'),

const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),
  renderLoading: () => <Loading />,
  // If you use `graphql-typescript-definitions` for generating types from your
  // GraphQL documents, you'll be warned if there are required variables you aren’t
  // providing here!
  usePreload: () => usePreload(MyQuery),
  usePrefetch: () => usePrefetch(MyQuery),
  useKeepFresh: () => useKeepFresh(MyQuery),

Deferring components

By default, components are loaded as early as possible. This means that, if the library can load your component synchronously, it will try to do so. If that is not possible, it will instead load it in after the component is mounted. In some cases, a component may not be important enough to warrant being loaded early. This library exposes a few ways of "deferring" the loading of the component to an appropriate time.

If a component should always be deferred in some way, you can pass a custom defer option to createAsyncComponent. This property should be a member of the DeferTiming enum, which currently allows you to force deferring the component until:

  • Component mount (DeferTiming.Mount; note that this will defer it until mount even if the component could have been resolved synchronously),
  • Browser idle (DeferTiming.Idle; if window.requestIdleCallback is not available, it will load on mount), or
  • Component is in the viewport (DeferTiming.InViewport; if IntersectionObserver is not available, it will load on mount)
import {createAsyncComponent, DeferTiming} from '@shopify/react-async';

// No deferring
const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),

// Never load synchronously, always start load in mount
const MyComponentOnMount = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),
  defer: DeferTiming.Mount,

// Never load synchronously, always start load in requestIdleCallback
const MyComponentOnIdle = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),
  defer: DeferTiming.Idle,

// Never load synchronously, always start load in when any part of
// the component is intersecting the viewport
const MyComponentOnIdle = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),
  defer: DeferTiming.InViewport,

You can also pass a function to defer. This function, which will be called with the current props of the component, should return true when the component should begin loading. This makes it easy to implement components that have their visibility controlled by a property, like the Polaris Modal’s open prop:

const MyModalComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () =>
    import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyModalComponent' */ './MyModalComponent'),
  defer: ({open}) => open,

When to use MyComponent.Preload, MyComponent.Prefetch and MyComponent.KeepFresh

<MyComponent.Preload />

Will only be required when you purposely want to control the pre-loading.

For example

const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),
  usePreload: () => usePreload(MyQuery),

<MyComponent.Preload />;

When relying on the default behaviour we do not need to render MyComponent.Preload

For example

const MyComponent = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import(/* webpackChunkName: 'MyComponent' */ './MyComponent'),

<MyComponent />;

Dont use .Preload .Prefetch components with defer

It is not advisable to use .Preload or .Prefetch with the defer property. This is because it will be ignored by the <MyComponent.Preload /> and <MyComponent.Prefetch /> components.

Progressive hydration

It can sometimes be useful to server render a component, but to wait to load its assets until later in the page lifecycle. This is particularly relevant for large, mostly static components, components that are very likely to be outside the viewport on load, and expensive components that would cause significant layout shifts if only rendered on the client. This library supports this pattern through the deferHydration option, and with the help from the @shopify/react-hydrate package.

Note: for progressive hydration to work, you must render either a HydrationTracker component from @shopify/react-hydrate or an HtmlUpdater from @shopify/react-html>=9.0.0 somewhere in your app.

In defining your async component, simply set the deferHydration option to one of the DeferTiming enum values (or, as noted in the previous example, a function that accepts props and returns a boolean).

const Expensive = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import('./Expensive'),
  deferHydration: DeferTiming.InViewport,

The resulting component has special loading behavior that differs by environment:

  • On the server, the component renders synchronously, but does not mark assets as used.
  • On the client, when the app is undergoing hydration, the component persists its server-rendered markup, even though its assets are not yet available. When the condition specified by deferHydration is met, the assets will be loaded, and the component will be hydrated.
  • On the client, when the app has already undergone hydration, the component will begin loading on mount, and will show the result of calling renderLoading, just like any other async component.

usePreload, usePrefetch, and useKeepFresh

These hooks are provided as conveniences for extracting functions from an async component that can be used to preload, prefetch, or keep fresh. The result is identical to calling AsyncComponent.useX directly, but works better with the tooling around hooks, which often does not understand the "static member as hook" pattern.

import {createAsyncComponent, usePreload} from '@shopify/react-async`

const Expensive = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import('./Expensive'),
  deferHydration: DeferTiming.InViewport,

function MyComponent({children}) {
  const preload = usePreload(Expensive);
  return <div onMouseEnter={preload}>{children}</div>;


The useAsync hook is a primitive that can be used by other libraries to create asynchronous components with different behaviors. One example is @shopify/react-graphql, where this hook is used to implement asynchronous GraphQL query components.

This hook accepts two arguments:

  • resolver, an object matching the Resolver type from @shopify/async. This object is in charge of managing the loading of an asynchronous resource. It also controls the type of the result returned from the useAsync hook. The easiest way to construct one is to use the createResolver function from @shopify/async.
  • options, an optional object with any of the following properties:
    • assetTiming: when the assets for this async asset will be used. Should be a member of the AssetTiming enum. This is used to register the asset as used, as documented below. Defaults to AssetTiming.Immediate
    • immediate: whether the hook should attempt to resolve the async asset synchronously (using resolver.resolved). Defaults to true if assetTiming is Immediate, and false otherwise.

The useAsync hook returns an object containing details about the asynchronous asset. This object includes the following properties:

  • id: the ID of the asset, as specified by resolver.id.
  • resolved: null if the asset has not resolved, or had an error during resolution, and otherwise will be the unwrapped promise value returned by resolver.resolve().
  • loading: whether the asset has been loaded yet.
  • error: an Error object, if calling resolver.resolve() rejected.
  • load: a function that can be called to begin the loading process.

The following example demonstrates how to use the useAsync hook to implement the default usePreload provided to async components:

import {createResolver} from '@shopify/async';
import {useAsync, AssetTiming} from '@shopify/react-async';

const resolver = createResolver({
  id: () => require.resolveWeak('./MyComponent'),
  load: () => import('./MyComponent'),

function usePreload() {
  return useAsync(resolver, {
    assetTiming: AssetTiming.NextPage,

PrefetchRoute and Prefetcher

The PrefetchRoute component allows you to use the asynchronous component you generated with createAsyncComponent and automatically render its Prefetch component when the user looks like they are going to navigate to a page that uses it. This component takes as its props the asynchronous component, a path pattern to look for (a string or RegExp that is compared against the target pathname), and an optional function that can map the URL to a set of props for your prefetch component.

Consider this async component:

const ProductDetails = createAsyncComponent({
  load: () => import('./ProductDetails'),
  usePrefetch: ({id}: {id: string}) =>
    usePrefetch(PrefetchableGraphQLQuery, {id}),

This component might be rendered when the URL matches /products/:id. If we want to prefetch this component (including its GraphQL query!) whenever the user is going to navigate to a matching URL, we would register this intent with the following PrefetchRoute component:

  render={(url) => {
    const id = url.pathname.split('/').pop();
    return <ProductDetails.Prefetch id={id} />;

To make the routes actually prefetch, you will need to add the Prefetcher component somewhere in your app. This component should only ever be rendered once, and will need to be somewhere that has access to all the context the prefetched components may depend on (for example, if your prefetching includes prefetching GraphQL data with Apollo, you will need to put this component below your ApolloProvider).

<Prefetcher />

And that’s it. While we reserve the right to change it, the basic process for determining merchant navigation intent is fairly simple. We listen for users mousing over or focusing in to elements with an href attribute (or, data-href, if you can’t use a real link) and, if the user doesn’t mouse/ focus out in some small amount of time, we prefetch all matching components. We also do the prefetch when the user begins their click on an element with an href attribute.

AsyncAssetManager and AsyncAssetContext

AsyncAssetManager and AsyncAssetContext allow you to extract the asynchronous bundles that were required for your application. If you use the Babel plugin, every component created by createAsyncComponent will report its existence when rendered to an AsyncAssetManager.

To make use of this feature, you will need to use react-effect. It will automatically extract the information and clear extraneous bundles between tree traversals.

To extract the used assets, you can call AsyncAssetManager#used(). This method accepts an AssetTiming, or an array of AssetTimings, which specify which assets were actually used.

import {extract} from '@shopify/react-effect/server';
import {AsyncAssetManager, AsyncAssetContext} from '@shopify/react-async';

const asyncAssetmanager = new AsyncAssetManager();

await extract(<App />, {
  decorate(app) {
    return (
      <AsyncAssetContext.Provider value={asyncAssetmanager}>

const assetSelectors = [...asyncAssetmanager.used(AssetTiming.Immediate)];

These asset selectors indicate an id for the asset, and whether scripts and/ or styles should be included for the passed asset timings. The IDs can be looked up in the manifest created by @shopify/async’s Webpack plugin. If you are using sewing-kit-koa, you can follow the instructions from that package to automatically collect the required JavaScript and CSS bundles.


Other libraries may need to register an async asset as being used. They can do so with the useAsyncAsset hook, which accepts an optional string ID, and an optional object containing styles and scripts fields with AssetTiming values.

The AssetTiming enum values allow you to specify how high-priority an asset is, which can be used to determine how to load that asset on the initial render:

  • AssetTiming.Immediate: load the asset as early as possible, but definitely before the initial hydration of the React application.
  • AssetTiming.CurrentPage: the asset is not needed before hydration, but is very likely to be used for other content on the current page (used for deferred and progressively hydrated components).
  • AssetTiming.NextPage: the asset is not needed for the current page, but may be needed after navigation (used for preloading, prefetching, and keeping fresh).

Note: useAsync calls useAsyncAsset under the hood, so you likely do not need to call it directly.


Most of the time, it makes sense to split your application along component boundaries. However, you may also have a reason to split off a part of your app that is not a component. To accomplish this, react-async provides a createAsyncContext() function. This function also takes an object with a load property that is a promise for the value you are splitting. The returned object mimics the shape of React.createContext(), except that the Provider component does not need a value supplied:

const ExpensiveFileContext = createAsyncContext({
  load: () => import('./a-csv-for-some-reason.csv'),

// Somewhere in your app, create the provider:

  {/* consuming code goes here */}

// and use the consumer to access the value:

  {(file) => (file ? <CsvViewer file={file} /> : null)}

The typing of the render prop for the Consumer component always includes null, which is used to represent that the async value has not yet loaded successfully.