Google browser size and visibility tool

Google Labs just rolled out a browser size tool to help you see how your website is seen by people with different screen sizes (more literally, browser winder sizes). This tool can tell you if an important elements of you page is showing up “above the fold” or if it remains hidden unless users scroll. The tool expresses visibility in terms of the percentage of users that would see it without scrolling, assuming a very large set of average web users.

There are some significant caveats for using this tool:

  • It applies to computers, not small mobile devices like iphones.
  • Different user populations use different screen sizes. For instance, more technical users often have larger screens and on average may see more in their browsers. Likewise users with very old computers are likely to have lower resolution and/or smaller screens.
  • Some layouts are sensitive to user-specified font size that may change how the page appears on their screens, even assuming the same resolution and screen size.
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