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Scenario

We have a table with information of many devices located across different time zones. The user is able to filter the data with a date filter. The data is linked to the local device time. The filter allows the user to preselect different periods, e.g. Today (Sept 14), Last 7 days (Sept 7-13) etc. Additionally it offers a calendar in which the user can pick different date ranges. It might be confusing that today from the user's perspective can be yesterday or tomorrow from the device's perspective. And for example if the user selects yesterday, not all devices might have ended that day and the data is incomplete. The user can sometimes even see data of "tomorrow".

Question 1

What is the best way to make clear that the option that users select (e.g. today, yesterday) is not the same from the device's perspective? For more clarity I added the date to the option, but I'm not sure if that's enough. I could also leave the "descriptive text" (today, tomorrow) out and only show the date.

Select period across multiple time zones

Question 2

What is the best way to make clear that the data is not complete yet although the period is closed from the user's perspective? This is the current solution.

Select period with incomplete data

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Keep everything to local time of that time zone.

With a note such as -

enter image description here


This will work as a clear message to the users as what they are looking at; without much time calculations. If California is 12:30 hours behind India; a user in India surely won't expect new data from California.

It's similar to what Google does to show tennis time table:

enter image description here

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Question 1

There are a couple of ways to deal with this issue:

  • Show the timezone during date selection - This is a common practice for a lot of applications that deal with timezone issues. Take the simple example of this website. All the updates take place at 12:00 AM UTC, so we are shown the current UTC time

SE timezone indication

  • Give the user the option to pick a timezone before date selection - This is like an addition to the previous solution. But it would definitely allow the user to get more customized results.

Question 2

I am not quite sure what is meant by closing. I am assuming it means the time when the results are calculated (like at the end of the day).

I think your approach is fairly straightforward. Another solution could be to show the last updated time with timezone

For example: Results last updated at 12:00 PM UTC

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