What Does Viewport Mean?

A viewport is a term for the visible area of a webpage on a
display device. It is used in both code and analog design as a way to refer to the display screen and how layout fits into that screen.


Techopedia Explains Viewport

Since new devices have radically different screen sizes, the viewport has become a major consideration in responsive design. Engineers have to figure out how to fit webpages into a small viewport for a traditional smartphone or mobile device. Even tablets tend to be smaller than traditional computer screens.

Designers can use a viewport meta tag in HTML and a tool in Cascading Style Sheets to set viewport parameters such as height and width as well as viewport scale and resolution.

Using the viewport meta tag is an important part of matching page compatibility to a device screen. Typically, designers look at all of the text, images and functionality in a page and lay it out according to what the viewport can handle – and when they put in viewport limitations, this provides a technical set of parameters to work from.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…