Scroll bars are your friends

I’m sure you’ve noticed that iPhone doesn’t actually have functional scroll bars. Why would it? All the scrolling is done by flicking your finger. But did you know that when you scroll around in Safari, (and most other scrollable apps) little translucent black scroll bars show up to indicate your scroll direction and relative position in the document? I know what you’re thinking, “thanks captain obvious, tell us something we don’t know”. Alright, the real tip isn’t that scroll bars simply exist, but that they can tell you instantly how long a document is and where you are within it. Read on to see what I mean.

I first noticed this in the SMS application. Once you start getting a few messages in any given conversation you’re able to scroll up and down. Here’s the tip: When you jump into one of these conversations those handy little black scroll bars quickly fade in and then back out, giving you a good idea as to where you are within the conversation and how long it is. This actually works anywhere scrolling does. The only place the scroll bars don’t appear is in the iPod application where the alphabet is shown on the side instead.

So there you have it, scroll bars are your friends, even on an iPhone. Enjoy!

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