Store key-value data on disk

If you have a relatively small collection of key-values to save, you can use the shared_preferences plugin.

Normally, you would have to write native platform integrations for storing data on each platform. Fortunately, the shared_preferences plugin can be used to persist key-value data to disk on each platform Flutter supports.

This recipe uses the following steps:

  1. Add the dependency.
  2. Save data.
  3. Read data.
  4. Remove data.

1. Add the dependency

Before starting, add the shared_preferences package as a dependency.

To add the shared_preferences package as a dependency, run flutter pub add:

$ flutter pub add shared_preferences

2. Save data

To persist data, use the setter methods provided by the SharedPreferences class. Setter methods are available for various primitive types, such as setInt, setBool, and setString.

Setter methods do two things: First, synchronously update the key-value pair in memory. Then, persist the data to disk.

// Load and obtain the shared preferences for this app.
final prefs = await SharedPreferences.getInstance();

// Save the counter value to persistent storage under the 'counter' key.
await prefs.setInt('counter', counter);

3. Read data

To read data, use the appropriate getter method provided by the SharedPreferences class. For each setter there is a corresponding getter. For example, you can use the getInt, getBool, and getString methods.

final prefs = await SharedPreferences.getInstance();

// Try reading the counter value from persistent storage.
// If not present, null is returned, so default to 0.
final counter = prefs.getInt('counter') ?? 0;

Note that the getter methods throw an exception if the persisted value has a different type than the getter method expects.

4. Remove data

To delete data, use the remove() method.

final prefs = await SharedPreferences.getInstance();

// Remove the counter key-value pair from persistent storage.
await prefs.remove('counter');

Supported types

Although the key-value storage provided by shared_preferences is easy and convenient to use, it has limitations:

  • Only primitive types can be used: int, double, bool, String, and List<String>.
  • It’s not designed to store large amounts of data.
  • There is no guarantee that data will be persisted across app restarts.

Testing support

It’s a good idea to test code that persists data using shared_preferences. To enable this, the package provides an in-memory mock implementation of the preference store.

To set up your tests to use the mock implementation, call the setMockInitialValues static method in a setUpAll() method in your test files. Pass in a map of key-value pairs to use as the initial values.

SharedPreferences.setMockInitialValues(<String, Object>{
  'counter': 2,

Complete example

import 'package:flutter/material.dart';
import 'package:shared_preferences/shared_preferences.dart';

void main() => runApp(const MyApp());

class MyApp extends StatelessWidget {
  const MyApp({super.key});

  Widget build(BuildContext context) {
    return const MaterialApp(
      title: 'Shared preferences demo',
      home: MyHomePage(title: 'Shared preferences demo'),

class MyHomePage extends StatefulWidget {
  const MyHomePage({super.key, required this.title});

  final String title;

  State<MyHomePage> createState() => _MyHomePageState();

class _MyHomePageState extends State<MyHomePage> {
  int _counter = 0;

  void initState() {

  /// Load the initial counter value from persistent storage on start,
  /// or fallback to 0 if it doesn't exist.
  Future<void> _loadCounter() async {
    final prefs = await SharedPreferences.getInstance();
    setState(() {
      _counter = prefs.getInt('counter') ?? 0;

  /// After a click, increment the counter state and
  /// asynchronously save it to persistent storage.
  Future<void> _incrementCounter() async {
    final prefs = await SharedPreferences.getInstance();
    setState(() {
      _counter = (prefs.getInt('counter') ?? 0) + 1;
      prefs.setInt('counter', _counter);

  Widget build(BuildContext context) {
    return Scaffold(
      appBar: AppBar(
        title: Text(widget.title),
      body: Center(
        child: Column(
          children: [
            const Text(
              'You have pushed the button this many times: ',
              style: Theme.of(context).textTheme.headlineMedium,
      floatingActionButton: FloatingActionButton(
        onPressed: _incrementCounter,
        tooltip: 'Increment',
        child: const Icon(Icons.add),