A hacky way to remove the “Reader” button in iOS Safari

We are creating mobile webbased-app for the iPhone called RandomApp. RandomApp is a compass like app that guides you through cultural venues in Amsterdam. Normally I set the apple-mobile-web-app-capable meta tag so that when the app gets added to the homescreen it runs chromeless (without the footer bar and the URL bar). However, due to a bug in iOS 6 (which has been fixed in the 6.1 beta) we can’t use this feature.

When you are building a webapp you want to hide the URL bar so you have more space available for you app. However when you have a certain amount of text on the page Safari offers the user a Reader button inside the URL bar. The consequence is that the URL bar won’t be hidden for at least five seconds. This shouldn’t bother you because it’s a great feature, except when you are trying to build an app with functionality instead of plain content.


Posted at December 28, 2012, under apps.