Typescript 3.0 unkown vs any

  • A+

Typescript 3.0 introduces unkown type, according to their wiki:

unknown is now a reserved type name, as it is now a built-in type. Depending on your intended use of unknown, you may want to remove the declaration entirely (favoring the newly introduced unknown type), or rename it to something else.

So my question is, what is difference between unkown and any? When we should use unkown over any?


You can read more about unknown in the PR or the RC announcement, but the gist of it is:

[..] unknown which is the type-safe counterpart of any. Anything is assignable to unknown, but unknown isn't assignable to anything but itself and any without a type assertion or a control flow based narrowing. Likewise, no operations are permitted on an unknown without first asserting or narrowing to a more specific type.

A few example:

let vAny : any = 10 ; // We can assign anthing to any let vUnknown: unknown =  10; // We can assign anthing to unknown just like any    let s1: string = vAny; // Any is assigable to anything  let s2: string = vUnknown; // Invalid we can't assign vUnknown to any other type (without an explicit assertion)  vAny.mehtod(); // ok anything goes with any vUnknown.mehtod(); // not ok, we don't know anything about this variable 

The suggested usage is:

There are often times where we want to describe the least-capable type in TypeScript. This is useful for APIs that want to signal “this can be any value, so you must perform some type of checking before you use it”. This forces users to safely introspect returned values.


:?: :razz: :sad: :evil: :!: :smile: :oops: :grin: :eek: :shock: :???: :cool: :lol: :mad: :twisted: :roll: :wink: :idea: :arrow: :neutral: :cry: :mrgreen: