Growing with the Web

Let me pinch-to-zoom your responsive site

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When I was doing my latest redesign of the blog, I came to the point where I needed to implement the viewport meta tag so the design would scale correctly on different devices.

After a little research I discovered several tutorials that said to use this:

<meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width,initial-scale=1.0,maximum-scale=1,user-scalable=no" />

I had a think about the user-scalable attribute, which so many tutorials seem to include. What it does is disables pinch-to-zoom on mobile devices, and I couldn’t come up with a reason for RWD tutorials to include it. Really there is no reason why we should be disabling pinch-to-zoom on a responsive site, unless zooming would break the app itself. The ability to zoom in on images, text, links, etc. is really handy and I use it all the time. Disabling it introduces potential usability/accessibility issue, so please in the future if you can, omit the user-scalable=no value.

<!-- much better -->
<meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width,initial-scale=1.0,maximum-scale=1" />

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