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What's the best way for entering time in a 12-hour format?

  1. It's easier to select from a radio button AM / PM but since this field is optional, what if they decided not to fill it out, they cannot unselect the radio button.

  2. Here they're able to unselect AM/PM but defaulting to 'Select' but it's not as fast as just tapping a radio button.

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Which is better? Or any other suggestions?

  • What do think about a switch with 2 label on each side (Am - Pm) – Core972 Aug 8 '18 at 3:46
  • But I cannot unselect AM/PM if that's the case? @Core972 It must be either side.. – catandmouse Aug 8 '18 at 3:51
  • Usually the AM option is selected by default. – asiegf Aug 8 '18 at 15:55
  • You mention that the AM/PM is optional. If a user doesn't select AM or PM, does that mean that the time is in 24-hour format? – maxathousand Aug 10 '18 at 21:43
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I like the radio buttons in that the information is not hidden. As an European, who hardly use AM/PM, I would try to look for the other numbers and make a mess before realizing that I just had to choose AM/PM. By seeing the options I get clear expectations and my mind set to the AM/PM model.

  • I didn't realize that AM/PM was not really a thing in Europe. Is that all of Europe (i.e. EU) in general or in specific regions? – Michael Lai Aug 10 '18 at 22:11
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    From Wikipedia: The 24-hour clock enjoys broad everyday usage in most non-English speaking countries en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Date_and_time_representation_by_country – celinelenoble Aug 11 '18 at 0:15
  • Yeah, I currently live in Norway, have lived in The Netherlands, Spain and UK and for what I know most people use the 24h one. – Ainhoa Ostolaza Aug 13 '18 at 22:06
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Showing the user information straightforward is incredibly effective. Less than 4 options show a radio fieldset.

When you have less than 4 items to display anywhere it almost always is a better idea to just show them to the user as in the case of radio buttons.

When you have several amounts to show then a dreaded dropdown option would suffice but for usability sake make the most used option a default preset so the user doesn't have to dig though massive amounts of data.

  • Can you explain your answer a little bit more? It is a little bit difficult to understand the second part of your answer. – Michael Lai Aug 10 '18 at 22:12

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