Such a tiny window to edit here on a cell phone

Just want to let you folks know how tiny the window is here to edit on a cell phone.

We observe that always in our vision are the four lines above the window. They never move away just to make a little more room temporarily for us. So we’re always looking at the “create a new topic” line, which is oddly still there even though that’s exactly what we’re currently doing. And then okay there is the title of the article line, okay but why does that have to stay frozen there? Why can’t it just kind of roll out the way temporarily to give us a little more room. And then there is the ux, the name of the category that I have chosen for posting, but I just chose that, I don’t need to keep on seeing it etc all that could just kind of roll out of the way. Sure you might say my keyboard is rather big, well if I push the cell phone’s back button and it goes away but then the minute I start typing again it comes back to helpfully help me choose letters of course. So I can’t blame it. Oh by the way when I go back and proofread my typing, if I change anything immediately the screen flies all the way down to the bottom. Although thankfully my cursor is still way up where it was, (but off the screen.) Well that’s enough reality for this evening.


Can I suggest a bigger phone and/or a more compact keyboard?

It is clear you are zooming in there (aka increasing the text size)? That’s fair enough if you so choose, but that’s not Discourse’s decision.

I have 18 lines available on my Pixel 6a, a fairly compact phone.


Do you encounter this issue on other forum software or social networks?
If you can start writing posts in other software, take screenshots and share with us how they look in each case with your own settings (keyboard size, level of browser zoom…), it might be interesting to compare.


I was able to roll the whole screen up!

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That’s an unreasonable comparison, what’s the point of that with no keyboard? It’s a composer!

Discourse also prioritises you seeing the context. So if you minimise the keyboard you get to see part of the Topic you are responding to.

If it’s a New Topic you get massive space:

Also your text size is waaay different! If you can read “smilies” on here, why not lower the zoom/text size on chrome so that Discourse text is smaller?


Well, I rest my case.


I just want to highlight some discourse features that help on small srceens. I have a very compact phone (Sony Xperia XZ1 compact). So when creating a new topic there are only three lines visible while typing.

So I can use the view without the keyboard, if I want to read the whole paragraph.

But there are some discourse features which improve the number of lines I can see.
I can disable the toolbar, so there are 5 lines.

And for reading what I wrote, I can use the preview

While writing a reply there are even more lines, because there is no space needed for title, category and tags.


You can also

  • Install the site as a PWA, removing the location bar and the Chrome tab switch bar gaining lots of screen real state

  • Enable Android Navigation Bar Gesture mode, which removes the black bar at the bottom and leaves more space for the app you are using


There is no difference, still 3 lines visible.

I don’t have that option (maybe it depends on the android version).
But since I do not start a topic that often and ever more rarely with my phone, there is no problem for me. For replying the 8 lines are enough

Interesting on the previous screenshot the Discourse header wasn’t visible but on this one it is :thinking:

It’s available since Android 10 I think? So every phone still supported by the manufacture will have it. For people using phones dropped by the manufacturer custom roms like LineageOS are the only way AFAIK

Also, I find it weird that lots of screenshots of people on this topic with small phones have enabled a dedicated number row on their keyboards. Not even the iPad keyboard have a dedicated number row :laughing:


The fundamental issue here is the screen size in combination with the text zoom level. It’s not about saving one line (as helpful as such options are)

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I did not know disabling that was an option. :slight_smile: I could have made use of that a few times, even if it only snuck in an extra line or two.

I think the main crux is the title, category and tag block, as you don’t really need that on screen the whole time. I don’t know if there’s any nifty solution to tuck that away somewhere and bring it out only when wanted, but that might increase the available space for more involved OPs on your phone.

I’ve made quite a few bigger topics on my phone, and it can get a little claustrophobic at times. There are some good tips in here so far though, and I’d wished I’d known about some of them sooner. :slight_smile:

Android keyboards are super customizable since early Android 2.x days!

It’s was impossible to set tags for topics on mobile for most of Discourse life. It was only added when most phones became larger, making it possible to accommodate it.

Also worth linking to the original topic on this area


Ha. I refuse to be keyboard-shamed. :slight_smile: The keyboard pops up, I type in it. That is about the limit of my relationship with it. :slight_smile:

I definitely think it should be in there. I used to use my mobile for everything Discourse-related, and I like that almost everything possible on the desktop is mirrored on the mobile version. This is for sure a good thing. :+1: I was more thinking about how often I would need that info on my screen when editing an OP. If space was tight, collapsing the ‘OP block’ at the top to reclaim some content space would be pretty sweet.

Or something like this could work too:


3 measly lines for new posts.
4 for replies.

It’s like some SMS app. Or maybe some tweet where there’s a character limit.

Sure, more lines if you don’t mind disposing of your keyboard every time you need to take a look at what you typed.

If this were desktop, I just hit some button and emacs would pop up and I could edit in the dedicated editor and then when I was finished I could send it back to the app.

No, users shouldn’t be required to reconfigure their cell phones just to use this one app.

Some more screenshots of roomy input boxes:

Okay on the first one I forgot to put the keyboard up. But you get the idea. Anyway the challenge is to find an input box as small as Discourse’s. SMS apps are disqualified from this competition.

Can you please share your Android and Chrome settings?

Here’s mine from Settings → Display → Display & Text:

And Chrome:


I’m really not convinced there’s any merit to this topic.

The original post includes a screenshot which appears to have been created by requesting the desktop version of the site. The mobile view when starting a topic or reply doesn’t include the top bar seen below:

50% of the above is taken up with a keyboard including number row, the android bar along the bottom, and a suggestion bar. It reminds me of IE toolbar hell.

This is what the New Topic interface actually looks like:

That’s 14 rows of editor with no additional goofy UI elements. 16 if I turn off the toolbar.

Two of the screenshots omit the keyboard entirely:

The fourth is shot on a different device, which doesn’t include the android bar across the bottom of the screen:

Were we inclined, we could all cherry-pick screenshots to portray any story we care to tell.

The only question is whether Discourse misbehaves when it’s used in a supportable way. Thus far I don’t believe this has been proven.


What do you mean by “top bar”? The header? That is also shown to me while creating a topic using the pwa.

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The horizontal bar with the site name, and user avatar.

My screenshot was from the PWA: