A few suggested Thunkable features to produce truly professional apps

I have been a professional software engineer for 40 years and am also an astrophysicist who develops apps related to my scientific work. First I would like to say that I am impressed with the range of functionality offered by Thunkable. That said, I am running into situations where fundamental features (that one expects to exist in any IDE) do not exist in the Thunkable IDE. Here are a few that really need to be added to the IDE to increase productivity and/or allow the user to produce top quality professional looking apps.

  1. Ability to copy and paste objects that have already been placed on a screen
  2. Text placed in buttons should have these alignment settings: Top, Center, Bottom
  3. Foreground text color settings for buttons (don’t restrict to only black text)
  4. Option to put line borders around layout objects as-well-as around cells within tables.

I have just started using Thunkable, and so I think I will probably find that there are other important features that are lacking. I will give you feedback as I discover more about the Thunkable IDE. I would like to use Thunkable for my Android development instead of B4A, since Thunkable has a more intuitive IDE that does not require extensive setup and clumsy syntax.

Again, I think fundamentally you have a great product in Thunkable, but there are still basic features that it lacks, but needs.

Rick Boozer


hola Rick

Hi Andres,
I already knew about centering buttons vertically within a layout object. What I am talking about is centering text within a button vertically. There is no feature to do that in Thunkable.
Rick Boozer

puedes enviarme una captura de lo que quieres realizar para intentar hacer una extension

Hi Italo,
Thanks for replying.
Yes, I just discovered that a few minutes ago. I thought I had scrolled all the way down, but had not. However, it appears the features I mentioned points 1, 2, and 4 still need to be addressed.
It would be great if Thunkable had those properties.
Rick Boozer


avance del punto 4

co.com.dendritas.HorizontalArrangementAddons.aix (10,0 KB)


Thank you, Andres! I will try the add-ons that you sent to me and get back with you to let you know if they do what I need. Again, I appreciate your effort.
Rick Boozer

Hi @Andres_Cotes, could you please prepare a screenshot about the methods and a short description of what this extension is able to do?



Hola @Taifun

perdon por que no borre los metodos de la plantilla que estaba utilizando

mas tarde la actualizo


@Andres_Cotes it looks nice what you created…
so this extension only offers properties to modify in the designer, but not in the blocks editor?

but as already mentioned several times, usually we use color blocks for colors instead of hex values…
see again our discussion below…
it does not look like you want to follow this design decision from the MIT App Inventor team?


more about colors see also here http://appinventor.mit.edu/explore/ai2/support/blocks/colors.html

How do colors work in App Inventor?

Internally, App Inventor stores each color as a single number. When you use make color and take in a list as an argument, internally this list is then converted using App Inventor’s color scheme and stored as a number. If you knew the numbers for the colors, you could even specify what color you wanted something to be by just setting its Color property to a specific number. If you want to see a chart of colors to numbers, check out this page.

see also http://appinventor.mit.edu/explore/app-inventor-color-chart.html

@moderators might want to move the color discussion into a separate thread…


hola @Taifun se que el tema lo habĂ­amos comentado pero esto es lo visualiza mi mente con el tema de los colores

it looks like you are assuming, that App Inventor can only create 15 colors using the colors block?
no: you can create all colors, see the screenshot below

as example let’s create color aquamarine

and you also can use just an integer value, in the example the value -8388652 or 4286578644 to get color aquamarine, see again the link I provided earlier App Inventor Color Chart

see also Juan Antonio’s post here about colors https://groups.google.com/d/msg/mitappinventortest/i_5h0Qua-Q0/HYVpsPFYBAAJ, his study is in spanish, so what about taking a look there?



por favor define un color en el panel de propiedades que este por fuera de los 15 que se visualizan

you will have to do this in the blocks editor
someone else also might want so say something about using colors in App Inventor… @Italo? @Mark? @Boban_Stojmenovic?
do others think, it’s a great idea to use hex values instead of the existing philosophy?



es correcto ese es es el punto falta mejorar eso, por eso existe la extension resume un estandar mas amplio

esto es un ejemplo con 6 colores cual se ve mejor ???

as already said, instead of the make color block

you also can use integer values like this



@Andres_Cotes Your extensions are most of the times very useful, although you are a little short in documentation. But this time, I will have to agree with @Taifun, and also repeat my point: When you make extensions to do things that can be made with blocks, you are not really helping the purpose of App Inventor/ Thunkable, which is teaching non programmers to code. You are preventing people from learning how to code their own solution, like I did here AI/Thunkable Color to Hex
What your extension does, it’s easily doable with blocks.


Looks like the initial color palette in the designer was made so students can easily select one of the basic colors, not for programmers to have a wide range of professional looking colors available at one click. People tend to forget what App Inventor really is.

If you want to use colors in HEX, What prevents the user to create a procedure with blocks to read the hex number provided and converts it to RGBA or the App Inventor color notation?

I think having the option doesn’t hurt. But I rather have a clean procedure which I have full control over its blocks to do the job, than load an external extension to do it.