ComboBox Remote Binding

    The Ignite UI for Angular ComboBox Component exposes an API that allows binding a combobox to a remote service and retrieving data on demand.

    Angular ComboBox Remote Binding Example

    The sample below demonstrates remote binding using the dataPreLoad property to load new chunk of remote data:


    To get started with the ComboBox component, first you need to import the IgxComboModule in your app.module.ts file. In this demo, a remote service is used for server requests, therefore, we also need to include the HttpClientModule:

    import { IgxComboModule } from 'igniteui-angular';
    // import { IgxComboModule } from '@infragistics/igniteui-angular'; for licensed package
    import { HttpClientModule } from '@angular/common/http';
        imports: [
    export class AppModule {}

    Define Remote Service

    When binding a combobox to remote data, we need to have an available service that will load data on demand from a server. The combobox component exposes the virtualizationState property which gives the current state of a combobox - the first index and the number of items that need to be loaded. In order to show properly the scroll size, the totalItemCount property should have value that corresponds to the total items on the server.

    The code below defines a simple service that has a getData() method, which receives combobox's current state information and returns data as an observable:

    import { HttpClient } from '@angular/common/http';
    import { Injectable } from '@angular/core';
    import { IForOfState } from 'igniteui-angular';
    // import { IForOfState } from '@infragistics/igniteui-angular'; for licensed package
    import { BehaviorSubject, Observable } from 'rxjs';
    export class RemoteService {
        public remoteData: Observable<any[]>;
        private _remoteData: BehaviorSubject<any[]>;
        constructor(private http: HttpClient) {
            this._remoteData = new BehaviorSubject([]);
            this.remoteData = this._remoteData.asObservable();
        // Use combobox current virtualization state and search text to build URL and request the new data.
        public getData(data?: IForOfState, searchText?: string, cb?: (any) => void): any { }

    Binding ComboBox to Remote Service

    When data is returned from a service as an observable, we can set it to the combobox component using the async pipe:

    <igx-combo [data]="rData | async"

    Here are some common cases when the combobox component needs to request new data:

    • when the combobox is initialized
    • when we scroll combobox's list - it will emit dataPreLoad along with the new combobox virtualizationState, which allows making a new request to the remote service.
    • when searching in a combobox - we need to make request to filter remote results.
    • when combobox is opened - we need to clear the results from any previous filter operations.

    Below are listed the handlers that listen to the already defined actions and execute requests to the server:

    import { ChangeDetectorRef, Component, OnInit, ViewChild } from '@angular/core';
    import { IgxComboComponent } from 'igniteui-angular';
    // import { IgxComboComponent } from '@infragistics/igniteui-angular'; for licensed package
    import { RemoteService } from '../../grid/services/remote.service';
        providers: [RemoteService],
        selector: 'app-combo-remote',
        styleUrls: ['./combo-remote.component.scss'],
        templateUrl: './combo-remote.component.html'
    export class ComboRemoteComponent implements OnInit {
        @ViewChild('remoteCombo', { read: IgxComboComponent }) public remoteCombo: IgxComboComponent;
        public prevRequest: any;
        public rData: any;
        private searchText: string = null;
        private defaultVirtState: IForOfState = { chunkSize: 6, startIndex: 0 };
        private currentVirtState: IForOfState = { chunkSize: 6, startIndex: 0 };
        private itemID: number = 1;
        private itemCount: number = 0;
        private hasSelection: boolean;
        private additionalScroll: number = 0;
        constructor(private remoteService: RemoteService, public cdr: ChangeDetectorRef) { }
        public ngOnInit() {
            this.rData = this.remoteService.remoteData;
        public ngAfterViewInit() {
            const initSize = {
                startIndex: 0,
                chunkSize: Math.ceil(250 / this.remoteCombo.itemHeight)
            this.remoteService.getData(initSize, null, (data) => {
                this.remoteCombo.totalItemCount = data['@odata.count'];
                this.itemCount = this.remoteCombo.totalItemCount;
        public dataLoading(evt) {
            if (this.prevRequest) {
            this.prevRequest = this.remoteService.getData(
                (data) => {
                    this.remoteCombo.totalItemCount = data['@odata.count'];
        public handleSearchInputUpdate(searchData: IComboSearchInputEventArgs) {
            this.currentVirtState.startIndex = 0;
            this.currentVirtState.chunkSize = Math.ceil(this.remoteCombo.itemsMaxHeight / this.remoteCombo.itemHeight);
            this.searchText = searchData?.searchText || '';
                this.searchText ? this.currentVirtState : this.defaultVirtState,
                (data) => {
                    this.remoteCombo.totalItemCount = data['@odata.count'];
        public onOpened() {
            const scroll: number = this.remoteCombo.virtualScrollContainer.getScrollForIndex(this.itemID - 1);
            this.remoteCombo.virtualScrollContainer.scrollPosition = scroll + this.additionalScroll;
        public onClosing() {
            this.searchText = '';
        public onClosed() {
            this.currentVirtState.startIndex = (this.itemID || 1) - 1;
                (data) => {
                    this.remoteCombo.totalItemCount = data['@odata.count'];
        public handleSelectionChanging(evt: IComboSelectionChangingEventArgs) {
            this.hasSelection = !!evt?.newSelection.length;
            if (!this.hasSelection) {
                this.itemID = 1;
                this.currentVirtState = this.defaultVirtState;
            const currentSelection = evt.newSelection[evt.newSelection.length - 1]
            this.currentVirtState.chunkSize = Math.ceil(this.remoteCombo.itemsMaxHeight / this.remoteCombo.itemHeight);
            this.itemCount === currentSelection ?
                this.additionalScroll = this.remoteCombo.itemHeight :
                this.additionalScroll = 0;
            if (this.itemCount - currentSelection >= this.currentVirtState.chunkSize - 1) {
                this.itemID = this.currentVirtState.startIndex = currentSelection;
            } else {
                this.itemID = this.currentVirtState.startIndex = this.itemCount - (this.currentVirtState.chunkSize - 1);

    Anytime new data is loaded, we update the totalItemCount property, in order to have proper size of the list's scroll bar. In that case, the service returns total size using the property @odata.count.


    A service needs to be included as a provider.

    Handling Selection

    When using a combobox bound to remote data loaded in chunks and dealing with a more complex data type (e.g. objects), it is necessary to define a valueKey. As stated in the combobox topic, when no valueKey is specified, the combobox will try to handle selection by equality (===). Since the objects that will be marked as selected will not be the same as the object that are continuously loaded, the selection will fail.


    When binding a combobox to remote data, make sure to specify a valueKey, representing a property that is unique to each item.

    When the combobox is bound to remote data, setting value/selected items through API will only take into account the items that are loaded in the current chunk. If you want to set an initial value, make sure those specific items are loaded before selecting.

    API Summary

    Additional Resources

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