Understanding the Support SDK


If your organization uses Zendesk Support or Zendesk Guide for customer service, you can use the Support SDK for Android to embed the same customer service in an Android app.

The SDK provides the following activities for embedding customer service features in an app:

  • HelpCenterActivity - Lets the user access articles in your Zendesk Guide knowledge base and, optionally, submit a ticket. See Adding your help center

  • ViewArticleActivity - Lets the user view a specific help center article.

  • RequestActivity - Lets the user submit, view, and update tickets to your customer service team. See Adding a ticket form

  • RequestListActivity - Lets the user view a list of their tickets. See Adding a ticket list

The activities have their own user interface that you can customize for branding purposes. If using a Material Design theme, the SDK will inherit your primary colour, dark primary colour, and accent colour. This level of customization is suitable for most use cases. Example:

<style name="AppTheme" parent="Theme.MaterialComponents.Light.DarkActionBar">    <item name="colorPrimary">@color/my_color_primary</item>    <item name="colorPrimaryDark">@color/my_color_primary_dark</item>    <item name="colorAccent">@color/my_color_accent</item>

If the included UI doesn't meet the product requirements, you can build your own. The SDK includes API providers to connect a custom UI to Zendesk functionality. For example, the game Nibblers by Rovio uses a custom UI and the API providers:

feedback form

Dipping a toe

Diving in

Ok, your organization has decided to use the Support SDK to embed customer service in your Android app.

  1. Before you start, meet with product managers, the customer service team, and the mobile team to decide how to integrate the SDK in the app. Use the Zendesk SDK integration checklist for guidance.

  2. After deciding how to integrate, make sure one of your Zendesk Support administrators has registered your app and turned on SDK features in the Support account.

    See Registering the application in Zendesk Support in Zendesk help.

    Make sure the features you want to use are covered in your Zendesk plan. See the breakdown of features and limitations per plan.

  3. Add the Support SDK to your Android project (Required).

  4. Initializing the Support SDK (Required).

  5. Set a user identity for the SDK (Required).
    The SDK uses the identity to access your Zendesk Support account as a user.

  6. Initialize the Support SDK in your app.

  7. Add a customer service feature:

  8. Customize the look and feel of the feature.

    See Customize the look.

  9. (Optional) Build your own UI in Android and then use the SDK's API providers to connect your UI to Zendesk functionality.

    See API providers.

Common terms

  • Anonymous - One of two identity types supported by the Support SDK. (The other is JWT.) An anonymous user can be a user with no information associated with them, or a user with some identifying information such as a name and email. See Setting an identity.

  • API providers - A group of APIs included with the SDK that lets you build your own support features. See API providers.

  • Contact us, Contact Zendesk - Submit a ticket.

  • Help center - A self-service platform by Zendesk Guide consisting of a knowledge base and an online community. The SDK lets users access the knowledge base. Learn more on the product page.

  • Request - A request by an end user for support. The term is interchangeable with "ticket". The request is handled by your customer service team using Zendesk Support. Learn more on the product page.

  • Ticket - Same as a support request.

SDK fact sheet

Supported languages

The Support SDK supports 33 languages. For the full list, see Language codes for Zendesk supported languages in Zendesk help.

The SDK has full support for RTL (right-to-left) languages.


The Support SDK is fully accessible, with support for TalkBack and Switch Access.

Programming language

The Support SDK is written in Java. It does not include a dependency on Kotlin.

Android API compatibility

The current version of the Support SDK is compatible with Android API level 21 and higher.


As the support module contains our UI code, and the support-providers module doesn't, the support module has a larger list of dependencies.

Note: Please remember that using a higher version of one of the following dependency in your app may result in our Mobile SDKs not working as intended as the most recent version will be picked by Gradle. If you are using any of those dependencies, they should at least be in the same major as the version we are using.

+--- project :support-providers+--- project :guide+--- org.jetbrains.kotlin:kotlin-stdlib-jdk8:1.6.10+--- com.google.dagger:dagger-android:2.42+--- androidx.multidex:multidex:2.0.0+--- androidx.legacy:legacy-support-v4:1.0.0+--- androidx.appcompat:appcompat:1.2.0+--- androidx.recyclerview:recyclerview:1.1.0+--- com.google.android.material:material:1.4.0+--- androidx.cardview:cardview:1.0.0+--- com.jakewharton:disklrucache:2.0.2+--- com.squareup.picasso:picasso:2.8+--- com.zendesk.belvedere2:belvedere:3.0.5\--- com.google.code.gson:gson:2.8.9
+--- project :guide-providers+--- org.jetbrains.kotlin:kotlin-stdlib-jdk8:1.6.10+--- com.google.dagger:dagger:2.42+--- androidx.annotation:annotation:1.3.0+--- com.squareup.retrofit2:retrofit:2.9.0\--- com.google.code.gson:gson:2.8.9


The footprint is smaller if your app and the Support SDK share libraries.

Dependencies like support contain UI elements and have a bigger footprint than the -providers.

You can reduce the footprint with ProGuard.

Method count

The executable bytecode of Android apps is contained in Dalvik Executable (DEX) files. The Dalvik Executable specification limits the total number of methods that can be referenced within a single DEX file to 65,536. As your app grows, you could exceed this limit and start getting build errors.

The totals are calculated using the dexcount-gradle-plugin tool on a Zendesk sample application that hasn't been optimized with ProGuard.

Total methods in support-debug.aar: 3446 (5.26% used) Total fields in support-debug.aar: 1609 (2.46% used) Total classes in support-debug.aar: 774 (1.18% used) Methods remaining in support-debug.aar: 62089 Fields remaining in support-debug.aar: 63926 Classes remaining in support-debug.aar: 64761

The method count is much lower if you're only using the API providers:

Total methods in support-providers-debug.aar: 857 (1.31% used) Total fields in support-providers-debug.aar: 471 (0.72% used) Total classes in support-providers-debug.aar: 206 (0.31% used) Methods remaining in support-providers-debug.aar: 64678 Fields remaining in support-providers-debug.aar: 65064 Classes remaining in support-providers-debug.aar: 65329

For ways to avoid the 65K limit, see Enable Multidex for Apps with Over 64K Methods on the Android developer site.

The following is a breakdown of the method count with dependencies, for an empty app module (no classes) with a dependency on support:

293      android26       android.animation6        android.app30       android.content3        android.content.pm8        android.content.res34       android.graphics9        android.graphics.drawable1        android.graphics.drawable.shapes3        android.net20       android.os13       android.renderscript33       android.text2        android.text.format1        android.text.method7        android.text.style1        android.text.util3        android.util56       android.view5        android.view.animation2        android.view.inputmethod69       android.widget107      androidx31       androidx.appcompat22       androidx.appcompat.app9        androidx.appcompat.widget4        androidx.cardview4        androidx.cardview.widget1        androidx.coordinatorlayout1        androidx.coordinatorlayout.widget11       androidx.core3        androidx.core.app2        androidx.core.content2        androidx.core.graphics2        androidx.core.graphics.drawable2        androidx.core.util2        androidx.core.view1        androidx.core.view.animation5        androidx.fragment5        androidx.fragment.app2        androidx.interpolator2        androidx.interpolator.view2        androidx.interpolator.view.animation44       androidx.recyclerview44       androidx.recyclerview.widget4        androidx.swiperefreshlayout4        androidx.swiperefreshlayout.widget5        androidx.transition87       com29       com.google22       com.google.android22       com.google.android.material3        com.google.android.material.appbar4        com.google.android.material.bottomsheet3        com.google.android.material.floatingactionbutton7        com.google.android.material.snackbar5        com.google.android.material.textfield7        com.google.gson1        com.google.gson.reflect7        com.jakewharton7        com.jakewharton.disklrucache19       com.squareup19       com.squareup.picasso32       com.zendesk5        com.zendesk.logger2        com.zendesk.sdk11       com.zendesk.service14       com.zendesk.util5        dagger5        dagger.internal175      java12       java.io60       java.lang0        java.lang.annotation2        java.text101      java.util11       java.util.concurrent8        java.util.concurrent.atomic2        java.util.logging2        java.util.regex1        javax1        javax.inject12       okhttp38        okio13       org13       org.xmlpull13       org.xmlpull.v12745     zendesk32       zendesk.belvedere9        zendesk.configurations31       zendesk.core35       zendesk.messaging13       zendesk.messaging.components8        zendesk.messaging.components.bot2638     zendesk.support1613     zendesk.support.request333      zendesk.support.requestlist173      zendesk.support.suas

The following is a breakdown of the method count with dependencies, for an empty app module (no classes) with a dependency on support-providers:

13       android2        android.app11       android.content0        android.os25       com25       com.zendesk5        com.zendesk.logger2        com.zendesk.sdk2        com.zendesk.sdk.providers6        com.zendesk.service12       com.zendesk.util4        dagger4        dagger.internal73       java5        java.io32       java.lang0        java.lang.annotation4        java.text32       java.util1        java.util.concurrent1        javax1        javax.inject2        okhttp31        retrofit2738      zendesk32       zendesk.core706      zendesk.support