Windows Phone display images from URL

The built-in Image element is quite good for loading and displaying images from the web, because it loads them asynchronously in the background thread and doesn’t freeze UI.

In this example I will show how to display a loading indicator while the image is loading and an error message if the image loading has failed.


You shouldn’t use the Source property in the XAML markup, instead you should set the Source property in the code-behind.

The XAML markup looks so:

<Grid x:Name="LayoutRoot" Background="Transparent">
    <TextBlock x:Name="loadingView" Visibility="Collapsed" Text="Loading..." VerticalAlignment="Center" HorizontalAlignment="Center" />
    <TextBlock x:Name="errorView" Visibility="Collapsed" VerticalAlignment="Center" HorizontalAlignment="Center" />
    <Image x:Name="imageView" Visibility="Collapsed" />

The code-behind:

public partial class MainPage : PhoneApplicationPage
    public MainPage()

        var bitmap = new BitmapImage(new Uri(""));
        bitmap.ImageFailed += (s, e) => this.ShowError("Error while loading the image.");
        bitmap.ImageOpened += (s, e) => this.ShowImage();

        this.imageView.Source = bitmap;

    private void ShowLoading()
        this.loadingView.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
        this.imageView.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
        this.errorView.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;

    private void ShowError(string message)
        this.loadingView.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
        this.imageView.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
        this.errorView.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;

        this.errorView.Text = message;

    private void ShowImage()
        this.loadingView.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
        this.imageView.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
        this.errorView.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;

At first I create the BitmapImage instance, after the creation of this object I subscribe to its events ImageFailed and ImageOpened. Then I display the loading indicator (the ShowLoading method). And as soon as the line ‘this.imageView.Source = bitmap’ is called, the image loading process starts. After some time either ShowError or ShowImage will be called.

The sample application you can download here:


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