Android Manifest Not Merging

So since Unity 5 we’ve been able to put our Android Native plugins anywhere in the project, they were not limited to existing in the “Plugins/Android” folder. However, while writing a native Android plugin the Android Manifest file was not merging upon build unless that Android Manifest file existed specifically in “Assets/Plugins/Android” folder. Is this still a requirement? Is there a bug? I’ve looked for documentation or other posts and I was not able to find the answer.

First of all, you should understand that the final .apk package has only a single (1) AndroidManifest in it.

All the AndroidManifest.xml files in your libraries (.aar or “Andriod library” project) in the Unity project are getting merged together at build time into a single manifest.

An Android library project is a folder structure (should be under Assets/Plugins/Android) that has the following:

  1. file at its root
  2. AndroidManifest.xml at its root
  3. libs/ folder with library (native JARs or .aar) dependencies
  4. bin/ folder with compiled java classes
  5. res/ resources with any needed Android resources

Not all folders are required of course, but the first 2 are a must.

Here’s an example screenshot of such a folder structure:

You don’t have to place your manifest under Assets/Plugins/Android anymore.