Bad Default

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Due to Surface RT's 16:9 aspect ratio, there's usually excess whitespace when viewing websites on Metro IE, particularly if it's using a fixed width. Text is smaller than needs to be resulting in smaller target areas. To make matters worse, as the whitespace is usually to the left and right of the content area, that means more work for your thumbs to reach out to targets. Fortunately, there's an easy fix.

Open the Settings charm -> Internet Options, and change the "Zoom" setting to 125%. 

Even at 125%, text and images are not worse off in any way. They are just as clear and crisp. See for yourself.



With this change, Metro IE becomes optimised for the web. And so I don't understand why Surface RT didn't ship with this default. It makes a significant difference to web browsing, in terms of both readability and usability. 

Update: For curiosity, I just tested how IE looks when snapped with its zoom setting returned to the default 100%. Practically unusable.