Skip To Content

Vector tile layers

In this topic

A vector tile layer references a set of web-accessible vector tiles and the corresponding style for how those tiles should be drawn. Vector tiles are similar to image tiles, but they store a vector representation of the data. The combination of tile access performance and vector drawing allows the tiles to adapt to any resolution of the display, which may vary across devices. In the map viewer, client-side drawing of vector tiles allows you to customize the style of the vector tile layer and the contents of the map.

You can add vector tile layers as operational layers or basemaps to the map viewer or scene viewer. You can also use maps and scenes with vector tile layers in web apps, using a configurable app, Web AppBuilder, or ArcGIS API for JavaScript.

Esri vector basemaps are available to use in maps and scenes. They include a number of styles that you can customize. Visit the Esri vector basemap group to see sample vector styles you can use and see what can be done to change the look of the map. Sample styles include simple color changes and more involved redesigns using sprite and font changes. The vector basemaps are updated frequently and include regular contributions from the GIS community.

With ArcGIS Pro 1.2 and later, you can share a vector tile package to your organization and publish the uploaded vector tile package as a hosted tile layer.

Considerations for using vector tile layers

The following are some considerations for using the current release of vector tile layers:

  • Vector tile layers are only supported in apps built with ArcGIS API for JavaScript. This includes configurable apps, Web AppBuilder, and custom apps built with the ArcGIS API for JavaScript. ArcGIS Runtime SDKs will add support in 2017.
  • Vector tile layers can be displayed in Internet Explorer 11 and later and most other current versions of desktop browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, and Safari.
  • Vector tile layers have the best performance on machines with newer hardware.
  • Maps containing an Esri vector basemap will be printed with the Esri Streets basemap. All other maps containing vector tile layers will be printed without the vector tile layers.