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This is an experimental technology
Because this technology's specification has not stabilized, check the compatibility table for usage in various browsers. Also note that the syntax and behavior of an experimental technology is subject to change in future versions of browsers as the specification changes.

The TextDecoder interface represents a decoder for a specific method, that is a specific character encoding, like utf-8, iso-8859-2, koi8, cp1261, gbk, etc. A decoder takes a stream of bytes as input and emits a stream of code points. For a more scalable, non-native library, see StringView – a C-like representation of strings based on typed arrays.


let win1251decoder = new TextDecoder('windows-1251');
let bytes = new Uint8Array([207, 240, 232, 226, 229, 242, 44, 32, 236, 232, 240, 33]);
console.log(win1251decoder.decode(bytes)); // Привет, мир!


Returns a newly constructed TextDecoder that will generate a code point stream with the decoding method specified in parameters.


The TextDecoder interface doesn't inherit any properties.

TextDecoder.encoding Read only
Is a DOMString containing the name of the decoder, that is a string describing the method the TextDecoder will use.
TextDecoder.fatal Read only
Is a Boolean indicating whether the error mode is fatal.
TextDecoder.ignoreBOM Read only
Is a Boolean indicating whether the byte order marker is ignored.


The TextDecoder interface doesn't inherit any method.

Returns a DOMString containing the text decoded with the method of the specific TextDecoder object.


Specification Status Comment
The definition of 'TextDecoder' in that specification.
Living Standard Initial definition.

Browser compatibility

Feature Chrome Firefox (Gecko) Internet Explorer Opera Safari (WebKit)
Basic support 38 19.0 (19.0) [1] No support 25 10.1
Available in Web Workers 38 20.0 (20.0) No support 25 ?
Feature Android Webview Chrome for Android Firefox Mobile (Gecko) Firefox OS IE Phone Opera Mobile Safari Mobile
Basic support 38 38 19.0 (19.0) [1] 1.0.1 (19.0) No support ? No support
Available in Web Workers 38 38 20.0 (20.0) 1.0.1 (20.0) No support ? No support

[1] An earlier, and slightly different, version of the specification was implemented in Firefox 18.

See also