May 14, 2020

Remove UITableViewCell highlight/selection color with Swift

Remove UITableViewCell highlight/selection color with Swift

This is one of those annoying default behaviours that iOS has. Below is a one liner that will help you remove the cell highlighting.

To remove the table view cell highlight/selection color all you need to do is this:

func tableView(_ tableView: UITableView, cellForRowAt indexPath: IndexPath) -> UITableViewCell {
    let cell = UITableViewCell()
    cell.textLabel?.text = "My cell text"
    
    // Remove cell highlight/selection color
    cell.selectionStyle = .none
    
    return cell
}

Inside the cellForRowAt indexPath method, on the table view cell, set the selectionStyle to .none.

Using an Extension

It is as easy as that to remove the highlight/selection color from a UITableViewCell. One could make a very simple extension method that can make this a bit easier in terms of autocomplete:

extension UITableViewCell {
    func noSelectionStyle() {
        self.selectionStyle = .none
    }
}

Instead of using the .selectionStyle property directly, we can now just call this function, so the updated code would look like this:

func tableView(_ tableView: UITableView, cellForRowAt indexPath: IndexPath) -> UITableViewCell {
    let cell = UITableViewCell()
    cell.textLabel?.text = "My cell text"
    
    // Remove cell highlight/selection color        
    cell.noSelectionStyle()
    
    return cell
}

Using a Protocol and Extension

Another way to do this would be to create a subclass of UITableViewCell and have that cell automatically set the selection style to .none. If you are going to have a subclass, it probably means that you have custom cells, in that case, it would be better to create a protocol that all the cells that require this functionality need to adopt, and have an extension that implements the protocol.

That protocol and extension can look something like this:

protocol NonHighlightableCell {
    func noSelectionStyle()
}

extension UITableViewCell: NonHighlightableCell {
    func noSelectionStyle() {
        self.selectionStyle = .none
    }
}

We are using the same extension function here, but now it will only work for cells that adopt the NonHighlightableCell protocol.