Collection VS. Container

Hi. Can someone give me a simple anecdote of collection versus container and when/why I would choose one over the other?


A collection is a list of things. It visually represents the rows of a table. Collections – list of rows of a tables – can be displayed differently: an actual list with or without checkboxes, cards, grid elements, calendar events, pins on a map (the map component is actually a collection), post-its on a kanban board, messages in chats or messages, etc. A collection is meant to read (display) data from a table.

A container is a section of a screen, it has nothing to do with data, it is not related to any table. It’s only a visual element. Inside this section, you can place components, such as forms, collections, or anything else. The idea is to group components together and change the visual settings of that section: width, vertical padding, background, and number of columns.

A form container is an inline form: it is like an add/form screen but instead of being a separate screen, it’s an inline section in a screen. A form is used to write data to a table. In a way, collections and forms are complementary: one reads, the other one writes.


That helps! Thanks!

I’m inferring from your explanation that the collection was originally unnamed…Especially in the original Glide Apps. An app had the main screen that was, by default usually, a list of all of the rows in that table. It could be formatted in a few varieties including list, checkbox, calendar, etc. Then one clicked on a single item and Glide went into the detail screen of that single row which could be customized with components.

Jump forward to the present…are you saying that the table’s “main” screen now a little more customizable in that it is blank and I add a COLLECTION which I then dictate how I want it visually customized? Clicking on a single item still takes me to the detail screen of the single row?

So, then a CONTAINER allows me to gather components in a group and apply a layout, filters, sorting, grouping, actions, etc. to that set of components only? Then I can add another CONTAINER with different criteria and actions?

I appreciate your guidance.

A Collection in New Apps is no different than an Inline List in Classic Apps. The only difference is the name of the component (Collection vs Inline List). Both are a list of items derived from rows in a table.

A container is simply that. It’s a component that contains things…such as other components. Containers are useful if you want different backgrounds for different sections of the screen or for setting a global visibility condition on the container instead of having to set visibility conditions on multiple individual components.

In Classic Apps, some screens were list only screens and some were detail screens. In New Apps, all screens are detail screens, so you can have more than just a single List/Collection in the screen. Now you can add multiple components on any screen.


The purpose of a container is to change the visual settings of that section: width, vertical padding, background, and number of columns.

As Jeff mentioned, you can also apply visibility conditions, like any other screen component.

Filtering and sorting are applied to collections, not containers.

Actions can be triggered via some components, containers not being one of them.

A container is just a section of the screen that allows to change width, vertical padding, background, and number of columns, nothing more and nothing less.

I mentioned the form container previously because it can easily be confused with the container.