The XMLHttpRequest property responseType is an enumerated string value specifying the type of data contained in the response. It also lets the author change the response type. If an empty string is set as the value of responseType, the default value of "text" is used.


var type = XMLHttpRequest.responseType;

XMLHttpRequest.responseType = type;


A string taken from the XMLHttpRequestResponseType enum which specifies what type of data the response contains.

When setting responseType to a particular value, the author should make sure that the server is actually sending a response compatible with that format. If the server returns data that is not compatible with the responseType that was set, the value of response will be null.

The values supported by responseType are the following:

Value Description
"" An empty responseType string is treated the same as "text", the default type (therefore, as a DOMString.
"arraybuffer" The response is a JavaScript ArrayBuffer containing binary data.
"blob" The response is a Blob object containing the binary data.
"document" The response is an HTML Document or XML XMLDocument, as appropriate based on the MIME type of the received data. See HTML in XMLHttpRequest to learn more about using XHR to fetch HTML content.
"json" The response is a JavaScript object created by parsing the contents of received data as JSON.
"text" The response is text in a DOMString object.

Similar to "arraybuffer", but the data is received in a stream. When using this response type, the value in response is only available in the handler for the progress event, and only contains the data received since the last progress event, rather than the cumulative data received since the request was sent.

Accessing response during a progress event returns the data received so far. Outside the progress event handler, the value of response is always null.

"ms-stream" The response is part of a streaming download; this response type is only allowed for download requests, and is only supported by Internet Explorer.


An attempt was made to change the value of responseType on anXMLHttpRequest which is in synchronous mode but not in a Worker. For additional details, see Synchronous XHR restrictions below.

Usage notes

Synchronous XHR restrictions

You cannot change the value of responseType in a synchronous XMLHttpRequest except when the request belongs to a Worker. This restriction is designed in part to help ensure that synchronous operations aren't used for large transactions that block the browser's main thread, thereby bogging down the user experience.

XMLHttpRequests are asynchronous by default; they are only placed in synchronous mode by passing false as the value of the optional async parameter when calling open().

Restrictions in Workers

Attempts to set the value of responseType to "document" are ignored in a Worker.


Specification Status Comment
XMLHttpRequest Living Standard WHATWG living standard

Browser compatibility

FeatureChromeEdgeFirefoxInternet ExplorerOperaSafari
Basic support3112610187
arraybuffer10 Yes61018 Yes
blob19 Yes61012 Yes
document18 Yes1110 No6.1
json31 No10 No


12 — 16

moz-blob No No12 — 58 No No No
FeatureAndroid webviewChrome for AndroidEdge mobileFirefox for AndroidOpera AndroidiOS SafariSamsung Internet
Basic support5555 Yes50 Yes ?6.0
arraybuffer Yes Yes Yes50 Yes ? Yes
blob Yes Yes Yes50 Yes ? Yes
document Yes Yes Yes50 Yes ? Yes
json Yes Yes No50 ? ? Yes
moz-blob No No No No No No No

See also

Document Tags and Contributors

Last updated by: Sheppy,