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Coding an HTML button that works on mobile and desktop ( touch and mouse)


This howto demonstrates one method for getting a button to work on both mobile and desktop ( touch and mouse click) without using jQuery. it uses vanilla JavaScript and should work on most platforms.

The Problem

While coding a site I wanted a button to fire an event that hid some items on the page and showed others.  I added the normal onClick=’doMyFunction()’ to the button and tested. This code did not fire events on a Samsung browser but worked beautifully on the desktop. Hmmm .. how to solve this?

I looked up Stack Exchange, MSD docs etc but all the solutions involved loading jQuery. Why would i want to add thousands of lines of code for one small button? SO I found a plain JavaScript, No jquery code solution.

The Solution

I added this to the bottom of my code and it is working for both touch and desktop. I have found it helps to fire the event through adding an event listener. There are two listeners added as click (for mouse) and touchend ( for touch) are mutually exclusive on touch and mouse .

Adding an event to an element

let myButton = document.querySelector('.button-class');  
// desktop
    myButton.addEventListener('click', function (ev) {   
// touch
    myButton.addEventListener('touchend', function (ev) {   



If adding listeners for your button (one for touch and other desktop ) you could have problems

Many solutions involve adding two listeners, one for mobile / touch and one for desktop / mouse.  However there is a chance both listeners could get fired calling your code twice. There are some platforms / events where both the events will fire. There are some solutions to that below.

  • Add a static variable in the called function to check if it has already been called
  • Add two mutually exclusive events that don’t fire on both touch / desktop e.g touchend event for a button on a mobile and click for a button on a desktop
  • Check if the previous state is the same as the current state and if it is cancel going further. For my example that would involve having a variable that keeps the last myButton.value acted on.