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2.3.0 • Public • Published

React Autocomplete 2Travis build status

Accessible, extensible, Autocomplete for React.js.

Things you should know about this fork:

  1. It's a fork from https://github.com/reactjs/react-autocomplete so that we maintain its development
  2. Looking for contributors
  3. I am trying to revive the original repo
  4. I am udpdating dependencies, code, adding and improving a11y, etc. Things might break. I should have done beta releases, but now is too late. I will then use the next major version to tell when things are more stable. For now, use it, find bugs, raise them here and or open pull requets!
  getItemValue={(item) => item.id}
    { id: 'apple', label: 'apple' },
    { id: 'banana', label: 'banana' },
    { id: 'pear', label: 'pear' }
  renderItem={(item, isHighlighted) =>
      style={{ background: isHighlighted ? 'lightgray' : 'white'}}
  onChange={e => this.setState({ value: e.target.value })}
  onSelect={value => this.setState({ value })}

Check out more examples and get stuck right in with the online editor.



npm install --save react-autocomplete-2


yarn add react-autocomplete-2


The main goal of this library is to be accessible to all users. Screen reader and keyboard only users specially. In order to do that, it controls some parts of the markup, and exposes some others for your adaptations.

Particularly, it exposes functions that allow you to decide for yourself the DOM of:

  • Menu
  • Item
  • Input

In order to make the component accessible, it sticks to the standard defined by WAI-ARIA 1.1. Examples of basic markup can be found here.

Patterns that you can use easily with this lib

  1. List autocomplete with manual selection: When the popup is triggered, it presents suggested values that complete or logically correspond to the characters typed in the textbox. The character string the user has typed will become the value of the textbox unless the user selects a value in the popup. How? Set these props to false:
  1. List autocomplete with automatic selection: When the popup is triggered, it presents suggested values that complete or logically correspond to the characters typed in the textbox, and the first suggestion is automatically highlighted as selected. The automatically selected suggestion becomes the value of the textbox when the combobox loses focus unless the user chooses a different suggestion or changes the character string in the textbox. How? Set these props to true:

And to understand the comobobox pattern, the best place to start is to read the spec.

Having said that, in the demo page, you will see 4 examples. Some follow the pattern List autocomplete with manual selection, others follow the pattern List autocomplete with automatic selection.

Things to mind when having custom implementations of any of the render properties.


Appart from all other attributes to have a valid markup. Note: This library will add automatically an ID to the item, will be the concatenation of the suggestionsMenuId with item-{itemIndex}; It will be used to define the active descendant.

why do we need active-descendant? because it will manage the focus to the screen reader.

  • To renderItem add for example:
 renderItem={(item, isHighlighted) => (


Be sure to add the id and the role=listbox



First of all, you don't want the browser autcomplete (like Chrome's one) to appear on top of your suggestions. For that, switch of the autocomplete attribute.

Second, the standard does not show how to add instructions, but it is a nice thing to add, so that the screen reader user knows that they are not only in a text field, but they also know they are in a combobox, that gives them the chance to select suggestions from below. To do that, add the aria-describedby pointing to an element in the DOM with the instructions. (this is shown in the examples, you can test it there)


Example of instructions DOM element:

<span id="init-Instructions" className="sr-only">When autocomplete results are available use up and down arrows to review and enter to select. Touch device users, explore by touch or with swipe gestures.</span>

Note: Don't follow these guides blindly. Test them in a real screen reader. Does not take so much. Here some cheat sheets



getItemValue: Function

Arguments: item: Any

Used to read the display value from each entry in items.

suggestionsMenuId: string

Default value: ''

Will be used in aria-owns of the input field, and the id of the suggestions menu to let screen readers know where to find the suggestions of the autocomplete

items: Array

The items to display in the dropdown menu

renderItem: Function

Arguments: item: Any, isHighlighted: Boolean, styles: Object

Invoked for each entry in items that also passes shouldItemRender to generate the render tree for each item in the dropdown menu. styles is an optional set of styles that can be applied to improve the look/feel of the items in the dropdown menu.

numberOfResultsAvailableCopy: string (optional)

Default value: 'Autocomplete results are available below.'

A string that will be added to the notification that tells the screen reader user the amount of results available.

autoHighlight: Boolean (optional)

Default value: true

Whether or not to automatically highlight the top match in the dropdown menu.

inputProps: Object (optional)

Default value: {}

Props passed to props.renderInput. By default these props will be applied to the <input /> element rendered by Autocomplete, unless you have specified a custom value for props.renderInput. Any properties supported by HTMLInputElement can be specified, apart from the following which are set by Autocomplete: value, autoComplete, role, aria-autocomplete. inputProps is commonly used for (but not limited to) placeholder, event handlers (onFocus, onBlur, etc.), autoFocus, etc..

isItemSelectable: Function (optional)

Default value: function() { return true }

Arguments: item: Any

Invoked when attempting to select an item. The return value is used to determine whether the item should be selectable or not. By default all items are selectable.

menuStyle: Object (optional)

Default value:

  borderRadius: '3px',
  boxShadow: '0 2px 12px rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.1)',
  background: 'rgba(255, 255, 255, 0.9)',
  padding: '2px 0',
  fontSize: '90%',
  position: 'fixed',
  overflow: 'auto',
  maxHeight: '50%', // TODO: don't cheat, let it flow to the bottom

Styles that are applied to the dropdown menu in the default renderMenu implementation. If you override renderMenu and you want to use menuStyle you must manually apply them (this.props.menuStyle).

onChange: Function (optional)

Default value: function() {}

Arguments: event: Event, value: String

Invoked every time the user changes the input's value.

onMenuVisibilityChange: Function (optional)

Default value: function() {}

Arguments: isOpen: Boolean

Invoked every time the dropdown menu's visibility changes (i.e. every time it is displayed/hidden).

onSelect: Function (optional)

Default value: function() {}

Arguments: value: String, item: Any

Invoked when the user selects an item from the dropdown menu.

renderInput: Function (optional)

Default value:

function(props) {
  return <input {...props} />

Arguments: props: Object

Invoked to generate the input element. The props argument is the result of merging props.inputProps with a selection of props that are required both for functionality and accessibility. At the very least you need to apply props.ref and all props.on<event> event handlers. Failing to do this will cause Autocomplete to behave unexpectedly.

renderMenu: Function (optional)

Default value:

function(items, value, style, suggestionsMenuId) {
  return <div id={suggestionsMenuId} style={{ ...style, ...this.menuStyle }} children={items}/>

Arguments: items: Array<Any>, value: String, styles: Object, suggestionsMenuId: string

Invoked to generate the render tree for the dropdown menu. Ensure the returned tree includes every entry in items or else the highlight order and keyboard navigation logic will break. styles will contain { top, left, minWidth } which are the coordinates of the top-left corner and the width of the dropdown menu. suggestionsMenuId needs to be the same id value that aria-owns of the input field has.

selectOnBlur: Boolean (optional)

Default value: false

Whether or not to automatically select the highlighted item when the <input> loses focus.

shouldItemRender: Function (optional)

Arguments: item: Any, value: String

Invoked for each entry in items and its return value is used to determine whether or not it should be displayed in the dropdown menu. By default all items are always rendered.

sortItems: Function (optional)

Arguments: itemA: Any, itemB: Any, value: String

The function which is used to sort items before display.

value: Any (optional)

Default value: ''

The value to display in the input field

wrapperProps: Object (optional)

Default value: {}

Props that are applied to the element which wraps the <input /> and dropdown menu elements rendered by Autocomplete.

wrapperStyle: Object (optional)

Default value:

  display: 'inline-block'

This is a shorthand for wrapperProps={{ style: <your styles> }}. Note that wrapperStyle is applied before wrapperProps, so the latter will win if it contains a style entry.

Imperative API

In addition to the props there is an API available on the mounted element which is similar to that of HTMLInputElement. In other words: you can access most of the common <input> methods directly on an Autocomplete instance. An example:

class MyComponent extends Component {
  componentDidMount() {
    // Focus the input and select "world"
    this.input.setSelectionRange(6, 11)
  render() {
    return (
        ref={el => this.input = el}
        value="hello world"


You can start a local development environment with npm start. This command starts a static file server on localhost:8080 which serves the examples in examples/. Hot-reload mechanisms are in place which means you don't have to refresh the page or restart the build for changes to take effect.


Run them: npm test

Write them: lib/__tests__/Autocomplete-test.js

Check your work: npm run coverage


Run with npm run <script>.


Builds the examples and assembles a commit which is pushed to origin/gh-pages, then cleans up your working directory. Note: This script will git checkout master before building.


Takes the same argument as npm publish, i.e. [major|minor|patch|x.x.x], then tags a new version, publishes, and pushes the version commit and tag to origin/master. Usage: npm run release -- [major|minor|patch|x.x.x]. Remember to update the CHANGELOG before releasing!


Runs the build scripts detailed below.


Transpiles the source in lib/ and outputs it to build/, as well as creating a UMD bundle in dist/.


Creates bundles for each of the examples, which is used for pushing to origin/gh-pages.


Runs the test scripts detailed below.


Runs eslint on the source.


Runs the unit tests with jest.


Runs the unit tests and creates a code coverage report.


Builds all the examples and starts a static file server on localhost:8080. Any changes made to lib/Autocomplete.js and the examples are automatically compiled and transmitted to the browser, i.e. there's no need to refresh the page or restart the build during development. This script is the perfect companion when making changes to this repo, since you can use the examples as a test-bed for development.




npm i react-autocomplete-2

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