Alternatives to Urlbox

Since 2012 Urlbox has replaced unreliable, inaccurate and inconsistent screenshoting solutions for developers like you.

Software

There are some wonderful open source packages for taking screenshots. Urlbox has tried them all. We've used a few of them to power our rendering engine. Many Urlbox customers came to us after stuggling to maintain and scale their own solutions.

Services

It's easier than ever to start a screenshoting service. We see new apps pop up on ProductHunt every month. Sadly few figure out how to be accurate and consistent in the long term. Many disappear or become unreliable when their makers get bored or overwhelmed. A handful have survived for more than a couple of years.

We’re profitable, privately owned, and in this for the long haul. Since 2012 we’ve generated hundreds of millions of screenshots for companies of all sizes.

Using Urlbox we've scaled our volume to over 5 times what we were. We’re confident that Urlbox will continue to produce great results as we grow.

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Urlbox's support of emojis was a big signal that it could replace our own service. It was a simple replacement - a real success story for us.

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Jānis Peisenieks
Jānis Peisenieks // Head of Engineering, Whimsical

Clojure

Riga, Latvia

See how easy our screenshot API is

Whichever language or framework you're using, we have example code to turn your URLs to images.

// npm install urlbox --save

import Urlbox from 'urlbox';

// Plugin your API key and secret
const urlbox = Urlbox(YOUR_API_KEY, YOUR_API_SECRET);

// Set your options
const options = {
  url: 'github.com',
  thumb_width: 600,
  format: 'jpg',
  quality: 80
};

const imgUrl = urlbox.buildUrl(options);
// https://api.urlbox.io/v1/YOUR_API_KEY/TOKEN/jpg?url=github.com&thumb_width=600&quality=80

// Now set it as the src in an img tag to render the screenshot
<img src={imgUrl} />

Check out our npm package here here, and on github

>50% of our customers built their own microservice... before switching to us

If you're comfortable with JavaScript, DIY screenshot APIs are easier to get started with than they used to be.

Urlbox has been through a few iterations over the years. We started off in 2012 using Node.js v0.6. Today it is still mostly written in JavaScript and increasingly TypeScript.

For the rendering engine, we started off using PhantomJS, then moved through various projects - webkit2png, QtWebkit and Electron before settling down with headless Chrome/Chromium (via Puppeteer).

There are loads of website screenshot APIs.
Urlbox focused on being the best since 2012.

Urlbox's screenshots are considered the most accurate and high quality of any screenshot service.

The Urlbox team sweat the small stuff, ensuring that fonts and emoji's render correctly. We cringe with you at full page website screenshots with repeating scrollbars and ugly horizontal seams. Other APIs struggle to handle newer CSS features such as Flexbox, Grid and slower loading WebGL pages.

So what sets Urlbox apart from other APIs?

Here are six ways Urlbox outperforms other screen capture APIs

A better way to take screenshots.

Retina Images

Render quality high-dpi images that look great on retina screens.

Block Popups

Block annoying pop-ups from getting in the way of your screenshots.

Click Accept

Dismiss cookie banners getting in the way of your screenshots.

Block Ads

Hide ads from taking all the attention in your screenshots.

Bypass Captchas

Automatically attempt to solve and bypass any captchas that are shown.

Bring Your Own Proxy

Use a proxy server to get around sites blocking your screenshots.

It would have been so cumbersome to implement a service of our own to take screenshots. Urlbox's API is so straight forward and the live preview is cool. I can play around with the parameters and see it do what I need it to do.

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Matthias Wagner
Matthias Wagner // CEO, Flux

JavaScript

California, United States

Other APIs look and feel dated.

You'll find Urlbox's dashboard and documentation fresh and regularly updated.

Choose your render mode

With Urlbox you can preview all available API options and check API usage on our modern dashboard.

With other APIs you'll feel like you've stepped into a computer history museum.

Screenshot API render mode

More output formats

With Urlbox you can render screenshots as PNG, JPEG, WEBP, AVIF, SVG, PDF and even HTML.

With other APIs you can render in only one or two formats.

Output format

Delay settings

With Urlbox you can ensure a screenshot is only taken when a certain element is either in the DOM, or has left the DOM. Very useful if a web page has lazy loading and you want to make sure spinners are gone before generating a screenshot.

With other APIs the burden is on the page you're screenshotting which is often out of your control.

Delayed screenshot API

Request options

With Urlbox you have all the power you need to set headers, proxies and user agents. You can even fail an API request if certain elements are present or not-present in the DOM. That means they won't count against your monthly quota!

With other APIs you pay for just a handful of options... regardless of whether or not they actually work.

Output format

Exceptional support

Sadly, you'll hear many complaints about the level of support from other screenshot APIs.

You can see for yourself on various forums such as Twitter. Priority support really does mean priority support at Urlbox.

With Urlbox you'll rarely have to wait for a whole business day - usually we'll get back to you within the hour!

Swiped.co

It's so evident Urlbox really care and pay attention. It's rare that I need customer support but, when I do, I know one of the team will get right back to me.

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Mike Schauer
Mike Schauer // Founder, Swiped.co

PHP

New Jersey, United States

ReviewTycoon

I love the support Urlbox provide. Normally when I have a new feature request like WebP images or blocking cookie popups, I email support and get a response saying it's already possible - within minutes.

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Rutger Tolenaar
Rutger Tolenaar // Founder, ReviewTycoon

PHP

Oegstgeest, the Netherlands

In this for the long haul

Look up Urlbox's founder, Chris Roebuck, on LinkedIn.

While Urlbox is small and scrappy you'll see he's been full-time on the business for over 5 years. Urlbox is proudly profitable and has been for years. It's a world away from the neglected side-projects so many of our customers have previously experienced.

Chris plans to be in the screenshots business for the long term.

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