Set selected item of spinner programmatically

The question:

I am working on an android project and I am using a spinner which uses an array adapter which is populated from the database.

I can’t find out how I can set the selected item programmatically from the list. For example if, in the spinner I have the following items:

  • Category 1
  • Category 2
  • Category 3

How would I programmatically make Category 2 the selected item when the screen is created. I was thinking it might be similar to c# I.E Spinner.SelectedText = “Category 2” but there doesn’t seem to be any method similar to this for Android.

The Solutions:

Below are the methods you can try. The first solution is probably the best. Try others if the first one doesn’t work. Senior developers aren’t just copying/pasting – they read the methods carefully & apply them wisely to each case.

Method 1

Use the following:

Method 2

No one of these answers gave me the solution, only worked with this: Runnable() {
    public void run() {

Method 3

public static void selectSpinnerItemByValue(Spinner spnr, long value) {
    SimpleCursorAdapter adapter = (SimpleCursorAdapter) spnr.getAdapter();
    for (int position = 0; position < adapter.getCount(); position++) {
        if(adapter.getItemId(position) == value) {

You can use the above like:

selectSpinnerItemByValue(spinnerObject, desiredValue);

& of course you can also select by index directly like


Method 4

Some explanation (at least for Fragments – never tried with pure Activity). Hope it helps someone to understand Android better.

Most popular answer by Arun George is correct but don’t work in some cases.
The answer by Marco HC uses Runnable wich is a last resort due to additional CPU load.

The answer is – you should simply choose correct place to call to setSelection(), for example it works for me:

public void onResume() {


But it won’t work in onCreateView(). I suspect that is the reason for the interest to this topic.

The secret is that with Android you can’t do anything you want in any method – oops:( – components may just not be ready. As another example – you can’t scroll ScrollView neither in onCreateView() nor in onResume() (see the answer here)

Method 5

To find a value and select it:

private void selectValue(Spinner spinner, Object value) {
    for (int i = 0; i < spinner.getCount(); i++) {
        if (spinner.getItemAtPosition(i).equals(value)) {

Method 6

Why don’t you use your values from the DB and store them on an ArrayList and then just use:

yourSpinner.setSelection(yourArrayList.indexOf("Category 1"));

Method 7

The optimal solution is:

    public String[] items= new String[]{"item1","item2","item3"};
    // here you can use array or list 
    ArrayAdapter adapter= new ArrayAdapter(Your_Context, R.layout.support_simple_spinner_dropdown_item, items);
    final Spinner itemsSpinner= (Spinner) findViewById(;

To get the position of the item automatically add the following statement


Method 8

You can make a generic method for this kind of work as I do in my UtilityClass which is

public void SetSpinnerSelection(Spinner spinner,String[] array,String text) {
    for(int i=0;i<array.length;i++) {
        if(array[i].equals(text)) {

Method 9

You can easily set like this: spinner.setSelection(1), instead of 1, you can set any position of list you would like to show.

Method 10

I have a SimpleCursorAdapter so I have to duplicate the data for use the respose in this post. So, I recommend you try this way:

for (int i = 0; i < spinnerRegion.getAdapter().getCount(); i++) {
    if (spinnerRegion.getItemIdAtPosition(i) == Integer
            .getColumnIndexOrThrow("id_region")))) {

I think that is a real way

Method 11

I know that is already answered, but simple code to select one item, very simple:

spGenre.setSelection( ( (ArrayAdapter) spGenre.getAdapter()).getPosition(client.getGenre()) );

Method 12

This is work for me.


Method 13

This is what I use in Kotlin:

spinner.setSelection(resources.getStringArray(R.array.choices).indexOf("Choice 1"))

Method 14

In Kotlin I found a simple solution using a lambda: {spinnerObjec.setSelection(yourIndex)}

Method 15

If you have a list of contacts the you can go for this:

((Spinner) view.findViewById(;

Method 16

  for (int x = 0; x < spRaca.getAdapter().getCount(); x++) {
            if (spRaca.getItemIdAtPosition(x) == reprodutor.getId()) {

Method 17

This is stated in comments elsewhere on this page but thought it useful to pull it out into an answer:

When using an adapter, I’ve found that the spinnerObject.setSelection(INDEX_OF_CATEGORY2) needs to occur after the setAdapter call; otherwise, the first item is always the initial selection.

// spinner setup...

This is confirmed by reviewing the AbsSpinner code for setAdapter.

Method 18

Here is the Kotlin extension I am using:

fun Spinner.setItem(list: Array<CharSequence>, value: String) {
    val index = list.indexOf(value) { this.setSelection(index) }


spinnerPressure.setItem(resources.getTextArray(R.array.array_pressure), pressureUnit)

Method 19

Yes, you can achieve this by passing the index of the desired spinner item in the setSelection function of spinner. For example:


Method 20

In my case, this code saved my day:

public static void selectSpinnerItemByValue(Spinner spnr, long value) {
    SpinnerAdapter adapter = spnr.getAdapter();
    for (int position = 0; position < adapter.getCount(); position++) {
        if(adapter.getItemId(position) == value) {

Method 21

Most of the time spinner.setSelection(i); //i is 0 to (size-1) of adapter's size
doesn’t work. If you just call spinner.setSelection(i);

It depends on your logic.

If view is fully loaded and you want to call it from interface I suggest you to call

spinner.setSelection(i); // i is 0 or within adapter size

Or if you want to change between activity/fragment lifecycle, call like this Runnable() {
  @Override public void run() {

Method 22

I had made some extension function of Spinner for loading data and tracking item selection.


fun <T> Spinner.load(context: Context, items: List<T>, item: T? = null) {
    adapter = ArrayAdapter(context, android.R.layout.simple_spinner_item, items).apply {

    if (item != null && items.isNotEmpty()) setSelection(items.indexOf(item))

inline fun Spinner.onItemSelected(
    crossinline itemSelected: (
        parent: AdapterView<*>,
        view: View,
        position: Int,
        id: Long
    ) -> Unit
) {
    onItemSelectedListener = object : AdapterView.OnItemSelectedListener {
        override fun onNothingSelected(parent: AdapterView<*>?) {

        override fun onItemSelected(parent: AdapterView<*>, view: View, position: Int, id: Long) {
            itemSelected.invoke(parent, view, position, id)

Usaage Example

val list = listOf("String 1", "String 2", "String 3")
val defaultData = "String 2"

// load data to spinner
your_spinner.load(context, list, defaultData)

// load data without default selection, it points to first item
your_spinner.load(context, list)

// for watching item selection
your_spinner.onItemSelected { parent, view, position, id -> 
    // do on item selection

Method 23

This Worked For me: Runnable() {
    public void run() {


Method 24

This worked for me:

protected void onStart() {

It’s similar to @sberezin’s solution but calling setSelection() in onStart().

Method 25

I had the same issue since yesterday.Unfortunately the first item in the array list is shown by default in spinner widget.A turnaround would be to find the previous selected item with each element in the array list and swap its position with the first element.Here is the code.

int before_index = ShowLastSelectedElement();
if (isFound){
adapter = new ArrayAdapter<String>(CurrentActivity.this,
                            android.R.layout.simple_spinner_item, yourArrayList);
adapter.setDropDownViewResource(android.R.layout.simple_spinner_dropdown_item;                    yourListView.setAdapter(adapter);
private int ShowLastSelectedElement() {
        String strName = "";
        int swap_index = 0;
        for (int i=0;i<societies.size();i++){
            strName = yourArrayList.get(i);
            if (strName.trim().toLowerCase().equals(lastselectedelement.trim().toLowerCase())){
                swap_index = i;
                isFound = true;
        return swap_index;

All methods was sourced from or, is licensed under cc by-sa 2.5, cc by-sa 3.0 and cc by-sa 4.0

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