I'm looking for a widget that is similar to what the iphone uses as a datepicker (found here), only horizontal.

Does anyone know what this would formally be called? I've been looking all over and can't seem to find it, though I'm sure something like this exists.

Thanks much.

  • I too have looked for such a control but not had any luck. In the real world I think it's called a Thumbwheel, so that's what I searched for.
    – JonW
    Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 21:41
  • I found this (kenwheeler.github.io/slick), which has a similar functionality, which will work for me - although it isn't exactly the same... Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 22:16

1 Answer 1


There are horizontal scrolling UI elements used in mobile apps and websites, which were popularly implemented as 'carousels' (although many would caution against using them because of usability issues that often crop up), but since then has also been used in other parts of the user interface.

I don't think you can give it a specific name because it is partly a design pattern and partly a type of interaction, so the name of the UI element or component will vary depending on how it is implemented. Hence it is still referred to mostly as horizontal scrolling, at least where I have seen it mentioned.

There is an article in UX Planet that talks about the usage of horizontal scrolling in mobile that goes into detail about some of the design patterns.

Some of the key points raised in the articles include:

  • Careful planning because there are a lot of things to consider and because it is not what most designers or visitors or used to, you have to plan a lot more than you might with a vertical site
  • Horizontal scroll works best when you want to display a subset of a category
  • For mobiles you have to do it differently. Your design must have a visual hint that a set of content is horizontally scrollable. The best way to do it is, letting a part of the scrollable content peek out
  • If it’s used wisely it saves a lot of vertical space and helps in compartmentalising the content on an app

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