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Starred by 11 users

Issue metadata

Status: Fixed
Closed: Apr 2016
EstimatedDays: ----
NextAction: ----
OS: All
Pri: 2
Type: Bug

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Issue 596729: Do not show the app banner unless the Manifest has a display set to standalone or fullscreen

Reported by, Mar 21 2016 Project Member

Issue description

It seems that if someone has a perfect Manifest but doesn't set the display, we are showing an app banner but then open the "app" in a new tab which doesn't quite offer a great experience.

I will implement that unless someone objects.

Comment 1 by, Mar 21 2016

Has someone complained about it? I don't see anything wrong with this.

Comment 2 by, Mar 21 2016

I find it really odd to advertise a web app but then install a "shortcut". Owen agreed.

I don't see any problem with the user adding to homescreen themself but the "app banner" doesn't sound appropriate.

Why do you think it's fine?

Comment 3 by, Mar 22 2016

I think it's good for mental models for us to only prompt users to add app-like things to their home screen. To me this includes aspects like offline and standalone.

It came up recently because somebody added Facebook to their home screen via an experiment they're running and said it felt weird that it launched in a tab, not standalone. That seems like a fair mismatch of expectations to me at least.

Comment 4 by, Mar 23 2016

OK. I don't feel super strongly about it.

Comment 5 by, Mar 23 2016

Status: Started (was: Assigned)

Comment 6 by, Apr 18 2016

Labels: -Pri-3 -M-51 M-52 Pri-2

Comment 8 by, Apr 18 2016

Status: Fixed (was: Started)

Comment 9 by, May 26 2016

I have some thoughts on this "bug" and the subsequent "fix". Paul Kinlan mentioned that it would be good to add them to this thread. I've written them up on my site:

Comment 10 by, May 26 2016

Re #9 Thanks for sharing your thoughts. It would be better if you could summarize the parts that are relevant to this bug and add them as a comment, as that's quite a lot of text to read and I think your point relevant to this bug is kind of buried at the end. 

BTW I think I agree with what you're saying, but I only skimmed your article.

Comment 11 by, May 27 2016

#9: These are some excellent thoughts, thanks for sharing.

Philosophically, we view the add to homescreen banner as a promotion for sites which can be experienced in a standalone mode as a single page app, rather than sites which act as a shortcut back into the browser.

That being said, not being to access the site's URL or site settings and the like in standalone mode is a deficiency that I'm thinking a lot about resolving. The team has been working on ways to expose the toolbar/access sharing and site settings in a standalone web app (see If we can come up with an elegant solution there, we can have the best of both worlds - a native-like UI that retains the access to URLs and linkability that powers the web.

Comment 12 by, May 28 2016

Well it would be far better experience to let the user decide if he wants the url bar. I agree with Adactio that wanting an icon on the home screen and not-wanting url bar is a completely different thing. This is still the web after all. User is using it off-line, have a splash screen, but this is still the web.

How do I share the app if it has no url? Doesn't this move of encouraging develeopers to use standalone/fullscreen actually defeats the purpose of web-like sharable apps?

Comment 13 by, May 28 2016

Can we have one more value for "display", something like "standalone-browser" or "standalone-with-urlbar". With this option, app still will be opened as separate activity/window, will have splashscreen and also will have url bar at top, probably something like in "Chrome Tabs". Or just standard URL bar as it was when each tab was opened as a separate activity (if URL needs to be selectable).

Anyway, it will be just standalone with URL bar in it. Seems fine.

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