Some websites have different versions that appear depending on the type of device you’re using. On a phone, the interface is usually streamlined to fit the smaller screens. You tend to see the full-blown version on your PC, laptop or even tablet if the resolution is high enough.
While this is fine if the mobile site is well designed but, it isn’t always ideal if it lacks features or some of them don’t work properly, which is just plain annoying when compared to the ‘proper’ version on the desktop. This can be a particular problem when using an Android tablet, as you might end up seeing the mobile version, leaving you with acres of empty space on your screen.
Well, all is not lost, as it’s actually very easy to force websites to default to the desktop version rather than the mobile equivalent.
How to view desktop versions of websites in Chrome
Changing the default view to that of a desktop website takes only a few seconds. On your Android device, open Chrome and navigate to a website. Once there, tap the three dots icon in the top right corner of the screen to open up the main menu.
Look down the list and you’ll see an option for Desktop site. Tap this and you should see the site automatically revert to the desktop version. This will now apply to all websites you open, but you can return to the mobile version once more by opening the menu again and disabling the Desktop site setting.
Obviously, desktop versions are not designed for small screens so you might find it hard to read text and may have to zoom in to be able to precisely tap buttons or enter text in forms. But you can switch back to the mobile site when you’ve done whatever you needed to do that couldn’t be done on the mobile version of the site.
How to view desktop versions of websites in Firefox
The method for viewing desktop sites on Firefox is very similar to Chrome. Open the app and find your way to the website in question. Then, tap the three dots in the top right corner and select Request Desktop Site from the menu. Again, this is now the default, so to turn it off you’ll need to reverse the steps above.
How to view desktop versions of websites in Opera
Unsurprisingly, as Opera is based on the same engine as Chrome, the steps all almost identical on this browser. So, you’ll need to open the app, find the site you want to view, tap the three dots in the upper right corner, then tap the Desktop site option.
How to view desktop versions of websites in Brave
Brave is a browser that’s growing in popularity and is another that offers quick access to desktop sites. Open Brave and go to the website you want to view. Next, tap the three dots in the bottom right corner to open the menu. Finally, tap the Desktop site option.
As you can see there’s a good range of options on how you access sites from your Android phone. If you want one that protects surfing sessions from potential snoopers, then a privacy focused browser should be on your list, along with a decent VPN.