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Some apps such as the Netflix app use double scrolling: you can scroll vertically within the page and horizontally within a component.

I know that Microsoft has moved away from horizontal scrolling in their latest OS because it wasn't very easy to use apparently.

What do you think is good/bad about horizontal scrolling? When is it ok to use it and how?

Thanks in advance

closed as primarily opinion-based by Shreyas Tripathy, locationunknown, Alan, Andrew Martin, Wanda Feb 16 '18 at 8:43

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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I don't agree horizontal scrolling is not easy to use on a touch device. Seeing my 9 months daughter slide through a horizontal gallery with animal images and sounds confirms this. It is as a natural gesture as any other gesture.

However, when combining horizontal and vertical scrolling, you have to be pay extra attention, since the gestures could be misinterpreted. One strategy to mitigate this risk is to add some friction to one of the directions.

For example, on a horizontal scrolling gallery, make the movement discrete, rather than continuous. This means having each element snap to a fixed position. Moving to the next or previous element requires a little extra effort, the movement is initiated only after you slide your finger for more than 50px let's say. The vertical scrolling page where such a gallery would exist scrolls normally.

There are plenty of situations where you can make use of horizontally positioned containers, especially on a smaller screen where you have to prioritize information.

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Horizontal scrolling is not something we would always recommend, but I think horizontal scrolling can be beneficial to users in some examples:

  • maps (displaying information in a large visual area that is not easy to see at a glance)
  • displaying a large number of items where scrolling horizontally could display different product categories.
  • Hello and thanks for your answer. To me maps don't qualify in terms of horizontal scrolling. It's not really scrolling as I mean it and it's in all directions at once. Displaying a large number of items is precisely what I'm talking about, which is why I was taking Netflix as an example. The question is whether it's a good practice in such instances and if you see better ways of displaying such contents. When you say you would not always recommend horizontal scrolling, what is your recommendation based on? – Raphaëlle M Oct 20 '15 at 12:22

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