I've been somewhat struggling on how to display a two column table on a smartphone (iOS app specifically).

My said that they would like something other than a boring UITableView to display the data. I told them that while it maybe boring it is the most user friendly option and most practical. That being said, I decided that I would sexy up a UITableView in hopes that they would realize it's the best option.

Here is the structure of the data: enter image description here

My biggest issue is trying to include the title of the columns into the view. Here is what I was thinking:

Have the view work similar to the Twitter app, where you can swipe in between tables. The first view list by the "Commonly Prescribed Medicines", the second view list sorts by "What is Treated".

"Commonly Prescribed Medicines" enter image description here

"What is Treated" enter image description here

As you can see at the top, the two little •• to denote that the view is horizontally scrollable.

My only issue with this is that it seems like I'm overcomplicating it. I don't see any benefit in being able to switch between the different data views. It's such a small subset of data that you can easily digest it all on a single screen.

Please shoot holes in my idea.

  • 1
    It does seem overcomplicated, as you say. If the aim is to sort the list by either the drug name or the symptom, it is surely easier to allow sorting on the columns rather than having two separate tables and swiping between them?
    – Matt Obee
    Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 15:30
  • I would agree, the issue that I had with that was how to display both the column names. I saw swiping between tables as a way to show one column name at a time. Thoughts?
    – random
    Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 15:41
  • 1
    I guess we should take a step back and ask who is using this and why? Are there two very separate user groups?
    – Matt Obee
    Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 15:48
  • It is primarily physicians in the age range of 35-65. The use cases from the customer is that they would be using this for quick reference so the data needs to be clearly displayed. It also needs to be uncomplicated since it's an older user group.
    – random
    Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 16:21

1 Answer 1


Instead of sticking to a 2-column layout, I would suggest going for a list based layout as shown in the mock-up below:

enter image description here

In this layout, the Medicine name can be the title and the condition it treats can be shown as tags under the medicine name. Furthermore, if the user wishes to search all medicines for a particular condition, he can just click on the tag to filter all medicines that are used to treat that particular sickness as shown in the second mock-up.

In addition to this, it is always good practice to provide a search box on top of any list with numerous records.

Note: Mock-up link

  • I like the filter aspect! Very nice, thanks for your help.
    – random
    Commented Nov 19, 2014 at 20:01

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