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iPhones and Interfaces

Topic Labels: Interface Designer
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I’m really excited about the new interface designer features. Airtable has given us the tools to build functional apps without getting people too deep into the database side.

Unfortunately I can’t quite fully embrace it yet – it seems like the interfaces don’t work at all on iPhones. Moreover the degradation is pretty un-graceful, users just get a message to login or use the app with little or no explanation of what went wrong and how they could fix it.

Our folks – especially some key stakeholders – are on iPhones more than any other platform, making this an important thing to solve for here. Does anyone have any ideas about how to deal with this? Does anyone know what Airtable’s roadmap is? Would love to leverage the features if I can figure out how to manage this challenge.

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Unfortunately, Airtable has stated in the past that they primarily focus their efforts on making Airtable a desktop platform, so they have traditionally ignored mobile devices. Just as an early example of this, mobile embedded views don’t show Airtable toolbars. (I have lost more clients than I would like because Airtable hasn’t fully embraced mobile.)

However, you might find some satisfaction by paying extra for a mobile app frontend like Glide which communicates with Airtable on the backend.

Thanks for the reply Scott – yeah, I suspected as much. And to be fair, building interfaces is hard, building responsive interfaces doubly so; I can understand why they don’t embrace it. And if it is important the Glides and Softrs of the world are what you want.

Would be cool to have a message that “interfaces are not supported on phones, please use an ipad” rather than sending people to the mobile app though.

During their Interface webinar yesterday, they mentioned that mobile compatibility for Interfaces was indeed on their roadmap.

Now whether that’s on the 2023 roadmap or not I don’t know :eyes:

W00t! Thanks for the update @Matthew_Lanni.

A roadmap is better than no roadmap . . .

Looks like things are at least moving in the right direction – I shared an interface with a co-worker last night, she tried to open on her phone this morning and at least got a descriptive error message telling her to open it on a desktop browser.

One question for the airtable folks – is ipad browser supported? It has at least seemed to work and checks my fundamental “this must work on mobile” requirement.

The iPad browser does partially support Airtable. It’s a little challenging to do some things, like creating/editing automations or scrolling around on the screen or editing fields. And it doesn’t let you highlight text in formula fields at all. But besides that, Airtable is relatively usable in an iPad browser.