I love the StackExchange mobile app - its low data usage, intuitive navigation and easy access to the most used features means it's often much better than the mobile site.

When touching a permalink to another question or answer across the SE network, the app is smart enough to open it within the app rather than the external browser.

However because of this, I find myself getting frustrated when I touch a link that I expected would open in the app, only to have my browser open instead. This often applies to offsite links, but not always, because some in-network links aren't supported by the app.

It's not as easy on mobile to see where a link is going - you can't just 'hover' over it and see the address in your status bar.

Given the app already has some logic to determine if the link is 'openable within the app' or not, could these in-app permalinks be distinguished?

One way to do this might be to include an icon similar to the following before links that will cause the external browser to open:

This is an example link enter image description here and this link is not.

Note: I did see this feature request, but I think my request is different enough because it's specifically about out-of-app links in the mobile app (some of which are still to SE sites), rather than a blanket 'all links to external sites' from the mobile site. It's also likely more intuitive to implement because of the logic that would already exist.

  • I have multiple browsers installed. When I click on a link, either I stay within the app, or an "Open with..." android menu pops up. – NVZ Jun 3 '16 at 15:09
  • @NVZ Interesting. I'm on iOS and it doesn't work the same way. Although, you gave me an idea - when I first installed the app I'd set it to open external links in Chrome. Turning that option off instead uses an internal Safari window, which is much easier to get out of than an external app. So for now, that makes things a bit cleaner, although ideally I'd still like to be opening the links I want to open in Chrome ;) – Tim Malone Jun 4 '16 at 0:20

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