JavaScript Promises – reject vs. throw

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I have read several articles on this subject, but it is still not clear to me if there is a difference between Promise.reject vs. throwing an error. For example,

Using Promise.reject

return asyncIsPermitted()
    .then(function(result) {
        if (result === true) {
            return true;
        }
        else {
            return Promise.reject(new PermissionDenied());
        }
    });

Using throw

return asyncIsPermitted()
    .then(function(result) {
        if (result === true) {
            return true;
        }
        else {
            throw new PermissionDenied();
        }
    });

My preference is to use throw simply because it is shorter, but was wondering if there is any advantage of one over the other.

Answer

There is no advantage of using one vs the other, but, there is a specific case where throw won’t work. However, those cases can be fixed.

Any time you are inside of a promise callback, you can use throw. However, if you’re in any other asynchronous callback, you must use reject.

For example, this won’t trigger the catch:

new Promise(function() {
  setTimeout(function() {
    throw 'or nah';
    // return Promise.reject('or nah'); also won't work
  }, 1000);
}).catch(function(e) {
  console.log(e); // doesn't happen
});

Instead you’re left with an unresolved promise and an uncaught exception. That is a case where you would want to instead use reject. However, you could fix this in two ways.

  1. by using the original Promise’s reject function inside the timeout:

new Promise(function(resolve, reject) {
  setTimeout(function() {
    reject('or nah');
  }, 1000);
}).catch(function(e) {
  console.log(e); // works!
});
  1. by promisifying the timeout:

function timeout(duration) { // Thanks joews
  return new Promise(function(resolve) {
    setTimeout(resolve, duration);
  });
}

timeout(1000).then(function() {
  throw 'worky!';
  // return Promise.reject('worky'); also works
}).catch(function(e) {
  console.log(e); // 'worky!'
});


Source: stackoverflow