Honey Honey - 1 year ago 240
iOS Question

Make scrollbar always visible on UIScrollView?

I need to make a scrollbar always visible on viewDidLoad so that the user can understand that there is content to scroll. I did the following:

[myscrollView flashScrollIndicators];

But then the scrollbars only appear for some time after viewDidLoad and disappear again only to reappear when the user touches the screen..

I need to make scrollbars always visible. How can I do it?

Answer Source

Apple indirectly discourage constantly displaying scroll indicators in their iOS Human Interface Guidelines but guidelines are just guidelines for a reason, they don't account for every scenario and sometimes you may need to politely ignore them.

The scroll indicators of any content views are UIImageView subviews of those content views. This means you can access the scroll indicators of a UIScrollView as you would any of its other subviews (i.e. myScrollView.subviews) and modify the scroll indicators as you would any UIImageView (e.g. scrollIndicatorImageView.backgroundColor = [UIColor redColor];).

The most popular solution appears to be the following code:

#define noDisableVerticalScrollTag 836913
#define noDisableHorizontalScrollTag 836914

@implementation UIImageView (ForScrollView) 

- (void) setAlpha:(float)alpha {

    if (self.superview.tag == noDisableVerticalScrollTag) {
        if (alpha == 0 && self.autoresizingMask == UIViewAutoresizingFlexibleLeftMargin) {
            if (self.frame.size.width < 10 && self.frame.size.height > self.frame.size.width) {
                UIScrollView *sc = (UIScrollView*)self.superview;
                if (sc.frame.size.height < sc.contentSize.height) {

    if (self.superview.tag == noDisableHorizontalScrollTag) {
        if (alpha == 0 && self.autoresizingMask == UIViewAutoresizingFlexibleTopMargin) {
            if (self.frame.size.height < 10 && self.frame.size.height < self.frame.size.width) {
                UIScrollView *sc = (UIScrollView*)self.superview;
                if (sc.frame.size.width < sc.contentSize.width) {

    [super setAlpha:alpha];


Which is originally credited to this source.

This defines a category for UIImageView that defines a custom setter for the alpha property. This works because at some point in the underlying code for the UIScrollView, it will set its scroll indicator's alpha property to 0 in order to hide it. At this point it will run through our category and, if the hosting UIScrollView has the right tag, it will ignore the value being set, leaving it displayed.

In order to use this solution ensure your UIScrollView has the appropriate tag e.g. Tag

If you want to display the scroll indicator from the moment its UIScrollView is visible simply flash the scroll indicators when the view appears .e.g

- (void)viewDidAppear:(BOOL)animate
    [super viewDidAppear:animate];
    [self.scrollView flashScrollIndicators];

Additional SO references:

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