I'm working on an iPhone app and am doing research on disabled states. It looks like it's not a common pattern on iOS.

I looked at many apps (e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, App Store, Apple Store and others) and only Facebook has disabled states (see screenshot below).

Is it a common thing to do on iOS?

Facebook - Disabled state


2 Answers 2


Disabled buttons are discussed in the UIButton in the UIKit section of the developer guidelines.

Buttons have five states that define their appearance: default, highlighted, focused, selected, and disabled.

For example, a disabled button is normally dimmed and does not display a highlight when tapped.

I'm not sure why they aren't discussed in the controls section of the Human Interface Guidelines.


I find that a disabled button distracts away from the goal as I'm trying to figure out what I need to do to enable it. When the goal has been reached show the button or always show the button as active but prompt the user if they haven't reached the goal yet.

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