I love my iPad. I love it for the fact that I can visit a website and view it in it's 1024x768 glory in full color. I love seeing the Apple site look pretty and I love using my iPad to show off Stack Exchange to my friends and colleagues.

Then the shock. I log in to check the sites and I get.... Grayscale. Seriously? My only 9 page tab preview on Safari suddenly looks dull and boring, having to open each tab to distinguish which site I am on.

I rarely feel like the team has taken something away when they make changes on Stack Exchange, but please, please bring back the color to my iPad.

Sidenote I agree with the grayscale scheme for any other mobile device, including the iPhone and Android phones. However I think any Android Tablet or iPad needs to be an exception.

  • 3
    I too own an IPad, and I believe the working surface is large enough that you can treat it like any other computer.
    – user102937
    Mar 1, 2011 at 17:18
  • Colour version on my Nexus S >>>>>>> greyscale. Mar 1, 2011 at 18:37
  • 3
    I don't even agree with it for my iPhone. I had zero problems with the way it was before.
    – Tim Stone
    Mar 1, 2011 at 20:16
  • 5
    I mainly browse on iPhone. Now the interested and ignored tags are not working. Every question looks the same. Turn this rubbish style off. Smartphones etc don't need a mobile version. If people want usability use an app.
    – Finglas
    Mar 1, 2011 at 20:16

2 Answers 2


This is mainly because we treat iPad as a mobile device, only because of problems with the WMD editor and Mobile Safari.

I agree that iPad is large enough to render the full site, and not really a mobile device.

Either way we'll find out since I removed iPad from the mobile device list. I hope Mobile Safari has fixed their WMD issues...

  • Now bring back the colors for Android! Mar 2, 2011 at 17:28
  • +1 for turning it off for Motorola Xoom (and other Android tablets) Apr 20, 2011 at 7:27
  • This answer caused my iPad to get nailed to my desk
    – bobobobo
    Nov 20, 2019 at 15:40

I know what's going to happen here, the team are going to think "FFS, they asked for a mobile friendly site for so long with 150 upvotes, and now we give it to them and they change their mind?! Goddamn users! Never know what they want" (I myself do this every single day)

But I think they've missed the point. We don't want a mobile friendly site to save bandwidth, we want it for usability purposes.

If they say, removed the side bars with tags, related, etc, to have a single-column layout and chucked in a viewport meta tag, that probably would have been enough.

By making the site greyscale (on the iPhone), I can't tell if I'm on SU, SF, MSO, Webmasters.se unless I squint or zoom in on where the logo used to be. It's actually a step backwards on usability, especially considering I (as well as most mobile users I believe) don't really care if it uses an extra 50kb of 3G bandwidth.

  • well, it'd be closer to 300kb on some of our recent sites which are quite heavily styled. Mar 1, 2011 at 20:15
  • 2
    This is the perils of product development. For every 150 customers complaining on the current product, there is another 150 guys who believe it is just fine as it is. They never feel they have to call to tell you that! So sometimes we get another New Coke.
    – Bo Persson
    Mar 1, 2011 at 20:15
  • 2
    @Jeff: Guess some of us that complain don't care much about the size. I, for example, run my iPad off my home Wifi where I easily get 6 Mbit/s, unlimited monthly use. I prefer nice colors to slightly faster load time. :-)
    – Bo Persson
    Mar 1, 2011 at 20:20
  • @bo well, this is filed under "iPad isn't really a mobile device" which I don't disagree with. See my answer for why we considered it that. Mar 1, 2011 at 20:32
  • 3
    I, for one, don't care so much about bandwidth on my mobile device as I do about usability. If you're going to make a mobile stylesheet, at least make it friendly to screens that are only a few hundred pixels wide. (And yeah, this is a much harder thing to do than reducing the page weight is.)
    – Brant
    Mar 1, 2011 at 21:10
  • @Bo Persson, 150 people complained about the layout and style, not the colours/bandwidth. once again something noone asked for is implemented while the thing that people want gets ignored.
    – Jonathan.
    Mar 6, 2011 at 14:50

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