User Experience Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for user experience researchers and experts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am working on an iPhone app. I am in the early stages of designing the structure.

I will be using word department as a node in the information architecture structure of an app.

I encountered a rather rare (or I think it's rare) issue with information architecture in the app. I am trying to design the navigation system of the app while having 2 main departments in the app. The problem is that I would not rather use the tabs, since 2 tabs look weird (and I haven't really seen an app with 2 tab bars) and they take too much space.

Systems, which I found are used for splitting departments in the apps are:

1. TABS Usually used for more than 2 app departments, like foursquare. Depts: Friends, Explore, User

2. FEED STYLE Usually used for 1 app dept. Dept: Feed

And many others which are usually designed for >= 3 depts

My question is are there any other alternatives to presenting structure of the app in iPhone apps? I would of course rather go for a pattern, which is well-known and not design my own.

And the second if you had 2 main depts in the app how would you present it in the iPhone app?

share|improve this question
I seen nothing wrong with having 2 tabs. I can't think of anything that more clearly indicates "there are 2 sections here". – obelia Nov 14 '12 at 2:35

I would suggest doing something like the iOS Mail app. The main screen is the inbox, but you can back up one in the navigation hierarchy to see the list. Just make sure to make it load on your main screen and only switch if you go back and then choose a different option.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.