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I am designing a mobile app using Xamarin. In my app's main page I have a list of few items (1 to 4 items perhaps). And then there are other items in the page.

There is a few actions that user can do for each item. (For my case it is 4 or 5 actions).

I have four designs in my mind: 1. Showing the action menu which is supported by Xamarin ListView.

  1. When user taps on item the item expands (perhaps with an animation ) and then the actions are shown as icon buttons in a single row.

  2. When user tap on an item show a list of icon buttons at the very bottom of page.

  3. Navigate user to a different page and show the item again(with a different design and perhaps some more details). And then show different actions in there. Again this could be varied options. I don't know what is good. But I thought of a tabbed view with tab buttons at bottom and first showing the tab for most common action.

Which approach is better? What are pros and cons of each approach? I prefer method four as it is easy to be implemented with Xamarin but I am not sure if it is proper.

  • I think it is very important to know the context of these items and the actions related to it. Knowing that can help provide an apt answer. – Vinay Feb 12 '18 at 8:07
  • Are there any visuals you can share to give additional context? – Refe Feb 12 '18 at 15:24
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The problem with icons is that it's hard to remember what they mean, showing text is always better and if icons are absolutely necessary, text should still be provided for example when hovering over the icon. 4-5 actions sounds like it could be possible to include them as text.

Option number three, what is the advantage of having it in the bottom? Is it still obvious which item the actions belong to? Can you have so much items that you need to scroll, in which case the item would be invisible when you scroll down to see the actions?

Personally I like number 1 most, because it is the simplest (although I don't know what ListView in Xamarin looks like): I stay on the same page all the time, I can see the items without having to go back and forth between list view and item view. This obviously depends on how much information you need to show about item, if it is a lot then number 4 might be better.

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It's tough to answer without visuals, because it's really the context that will determine which of these options might work best for you.

If there are only a few actions and they are relatively straightforward—e.i. actions the user is familiar with and that don't require further explanation—option 1 or 2 might work best. They seem to focus on efficiency. The user remains on the same page and both only require two clicks.

If there are many actions, or there is additional information required for the user to choose which action to take, something like option 4 might work best.

For example, I am redesigning a food ordering flow right now, and I am actually moving each product to its' own product page in order to support additional modifiers my client wants to add. This adds complexity to the flow (adding a screen, essentially), but it makes the users' purchase decision easier because it removes less relevant information (the rest of the menu) to make room for additional relevant information (descriptions and modifiers).

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