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Responsive Web Design

By definition, responsive web design (responsiveness) is an approach to web design.

It aims at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing experience—easy reading and navigation with minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices from desktop computer monitors to smartphones. Responsive web design is the foundation of modern UX practices for building applications for the mobile web.

Most Kendo UI widgets work and auto-resize when used in responsive web pages out of the box. Several widgets are going to need an additional kendo.resize if their dimensions are set to percentage values.

Widgets that Do Not Auto-Resize

The following list shows the widgets that do not auto-resize when their container is resized.

Auto-Resizing Widgets

The following example demonstrates how to auto-resize a Chart with a 100% width.

<div class="chart-wrapper">
   <div id="chart" style="width:100%"></div>

    $(function() {
            title: {
                text: "Gross domestic product growth /GDP annual %/"
            legend: {
                position: "bottom"
            seriesDefaults: {
                type: "area"
            series: [{
                name: "India",
                data: [3.907, 7.943, 7.848, 9.284, 9.263, 9.801, 3.890, 8.238, 9.552, 6.855]
            valueAxis: {
                labels: {
                    format: "{0}%"
                line: {
                    visible: false
                axisCrossingValue: -10
            categoryAxis: {
                categories: [2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011],
                majorGridLines: {
                    visible: false
            tooltip: {
                visible: true,
                format: "{0}%",
                template: "#= #: #= value #"

    $(window).on("resize", function() {

Applying Individual Widget Resizing

Each Kendo UI widget has a resize() method which can be used to trigger a layout readjustment instead of using kendo.resize. The resize method of the widget accepts a single Boolean parameter, which defines whether the control should execute its layout adjustment algorithm even if the widget dimensions have not changed ("force" mode).

Applying the resize Method

The following example demonstrates how to use the resize() method and uses a wrapper field which is documented in the article on the widget wrapper and widget element. If the widget wrapper resizes automatically with its parent element during browser window resize, it is not required to set new dimensions for the wrapper before executing the resize method, nor to use the "force" mode.

var gridWidget = $("#GridID").data("kendoGrid");

// Apply the new height and trigger the layout readjustment.

// Force the layout readjustment without setting a new height.

Media Queries

Kendo UI uses media queries to enhance the behavior of the widgets on different form factors. Media queries, a part of the CSS3 specification, load different sets of styles to different devices and deliver improved and unified end-user experience.

The responsive styles of Kendo UI use the non-mobile first method with media queries having max-width breakpoints. Max-width refers to every window or device with width or screen-width of less than or equal to the amount given. That said, written styles, e.g. under 480px breakpoint, are going to override the base styles on screens of max-width equal to 480px or less.

Responsive behaviors which depend on CSS media queries cannot be disabled.

The following example demonstrates a CSS media query.

@media only screen and (max-width: 480px) {
    h2 {
        font-size: 14pt;

Enhancing Responsiveness

Responsive UI enhancements utilize media queries and include built-in UI enhancements for scalability and improved user experience on different form factors. Such features are available for Kendo UI widgets such as the Grid, Scheduler, TreeList, etc.

  • Kendo UI Grid—Provides the ability to define which columns will be hidden on small view ports. For a runnable example, refer to the demo on implementing responsive columns in the Grid.
  • Kendo UI Pager—Utilize assigned classes based on the current width of the Pager. The classes automatically update upon window resizes or when the Pager is placed in a Kendo UI Layout widget. In all other cases, you have to manually apply resize() method.
  • Kendo UI Scheduler—Provides a mechanism to overflow its view selection options into a dropdown on small screen estates. Additionally, it can apply short date/month/year abbreviations where applicable. Thus, its visual presentation is fine-tuned for usage in responsive web scenarios.
  • Kendo UI Responsive Panel—This is a responsive container component. Its sole purpose is providing the necessary plumbing for hiding content on small screens when the specified width boundary is passed, and showing this content when its hamburger icon button is clicked.

For live demos on all Kendo UI components, refer to the Kendo UI demo page.

See Also

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