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I'm making an app with workflow where users have to first select city from list of cities, then select mall from a list of malls in the city, and then select store from a list of stores in the mall, and after then they will be presented with options to do something with that store, for example, to buy something.

If it's in mobile phone, I can just create multi-page options, where selecting one list will push the next screen into view with new choices. But if it's in tablet, I'm still considering whether it's a good thing to use the same approach. I mean, the whole big screen just to display a list of cities, and then the whole screen replaced with another screen to display a list of malls? I feel like I'm wasting the screen estate potential from a tablet.

But to consider the alternative, I'm thinking about making a multi-column choices, but I them put all in one page. The first column will has a list of cities, which will trigger the second column of malls to appear after the user select a city. The third column will also triggered to appear after the user select a mall. And so on.

Is the latter a better approach to multi-level options on tablet? Is there any better options to display these choices? Or am I just overthinking everything and displaying one page of list at a time like the mobile phone is actually the best way?

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TL;DR: I don't think you're overthinking it and implementing the "one page per selection" solution should be just fine.

I understand your concern with potentially wasting space on the tablet, but I don't see anything wrong with implementing the same "page per choice" solution on the bigger device. In fact, I think it will be very clean.

I would probably ask myself these questions to help me decide on a layout:

How many options will there be per selection?

If there are many choices (say more than 50 stores in a certain mall), maybe having a whole page will be useful and even needed for you to list them all out in a non-overwhelming manner (yay white space!).

Will this solution give the same experience while the tablet is in portrait and landscape orientation?

If this is a concern, I would implement the solution that is easiest to replicate for both scenarios. In this case, I would choose the "page per selection" implementation.

Can I easily scale the code I already wrote for mobile to the tablet?

If so, do it! Reusable code is awesome.

Ultimately, the choice is yours.

  • Oh that's true, I haven't thought about whether the tablet is in portrait or landscape. While writing the question, I was always thinking about the tablet in landscape mode. I think one page per selection will be the best way to present this. Thank you for the insight! – Chen Li Yong Jul 14 '16 at 4:46
  • No problem! Glad I could help. :) – adriennetacke Jul 14 '16 at 15:08

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