A drop-in replacement for UILabel that supports attributes, data detectors, links, and more
Objective-C Ruby
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A drop-in replacement for UILabel that supports attributes, data detectors, links, and more

TTTAttributedLabel is a drop-in replacement for UILabel, which provides a simple way to performantly render attributed strings. As a bonus, it also supports link embedding, both automatically with UIDataDetectorTypes and manually by specifying a range for a URL, address, phone number, event, or transit information.

Even though NSAttributedString support was added for UILabel in iOS 6, TTTAttributedLabel has several unique features:

  • Compatibility with iOS >= 4.3
  • Automatic data detection
  • Manual link embedding
  • Label style inheritance for attributed strings

It also includes advanced paragraph style properties:

  • verticalAlignment
  • textInsets
  • firstLineIndent
  • leading
  • lineHeightMultiple
  • shadowRadius
  • highlightedShadowRadius / highlightedShadowOffset / highlightedShadowColor
  • truncationTokenString


CocoaPods is the recommended method of installing TTTAttributedLabel. Simply add the following line to your Podfile:


pod 'TTTAttributedLabel'


TTTAttributedLabel *label = [[TTTAttributedLabel alloc] initWithFrame:CGRectZero];
label.font = [UIFont systemFontOfSize:14];
label.textColor = [UIColor darkGrayColor];
label.lineBreakMode = UILineBreakModeWordWrap;
label.numberOfLines = 0;

NSString *text = @"Lorem ipsum dolar sit amet";
[label setText:text afterInheritingLabelAttributesAndConfiguringWithBlock:^ NSMutableAttributedString *(NSMutableAttributedString *mutableAttributedString) {
  NSRange boldRange = [[mutableAttributedString string] rangeOfString:@"ipsum dolar" options:NSCaseInsensitiveSearch];
  NSRange strikeRange = [[mutableAttributedString string] rangeOfString:@"sit amet" options:NSCaseInsensitiveSearch];

  // Core Text APIs use C functions without a direct bridge to UIFont. See Apple's "Core Text Programming Guide" to learn how to configure string attributes.
  UIFont *boldSystemFont = [UIFont boldSystemFontOfSize:14];
  CTFontRef font = CTFontCreateWithName((__bridge CFStringRef)boldSystemFont.fontName, boldSystemFont.pointSize, NULL);
  if (font) {
    [mutableAttributedString addAttribute:(NSString *)kCTFontAttributeName value:(id)font range:boldRange];
    [mutableAttributedString addAttribute:kTTTStrikeOutAttributeName value:[NSNumber numberWithBool:YES] range:strikeRange];

  return mutableAttributedString;

First, we create and configure the label, the same way you would instantiate UILabel. Any text properties that are set on the label are inherited as the base attributes when using the -setText:afterInheritingLabelAttributesAndConfiguringWithBlock: method. In this example, the substring "ipsum dolar", would appear in bold, such that the label would read "Lorem ipsum dolar sit amet", in size 14 Helvetica, with a dark gray color.

The normal setText: setter accepts both NSString and NSAttributedString; in the latter case, the attributed string is directly set, without inheriting the base style of the label.

Links and Data Detection

In addition to supporting rich text, TTTAttributedLabel allows you to automatically detect links for dates, addresses, links, phone numbers, transit information, or allow you to embed your own.

label.dataDetectorTypes = NSTextCheckingTypeLink; // Automatically detect links when the label text is subsequently changed
label.delegate = self; // Delegate methods are called when the user taps on a link (see `TTTAttributedLabelDelegate` protocol)

label.text = @"Fork me on GitHub! (http://github.com/mattt/TTTAttributedLabel/)"; // Repository URL will be automatically detected and linked

NSRange range = [label.text rangeOfString:@"me"];
[label addLinkToURL:[NSURL URLWithString:@"http://github.com/mattt/"] withRange:range]; // Embedding a custom link in a substring


Build and run the TTTAttributedLabelExample project in Xcode to see TTTAttributedLabel in action.


TTTAttributedLabel is compatible with iOS 4.3+ as a deployment target, but must be compiled using the iOS 6 SDK. If you get compiler errors for undefined constants, try upgrading to the latest version of Xcode, and updating your project to the recommended build settings.

TTTAttributedLabel also requires the CoreText and Core Graphics frameworks. If you're installing with CocoaPods these frameworks will automatically be linked for you, otherwise you will have to add them to your project.


Mattt Thompson


TTTAttributedLabel is available under the MIT license. See the LICENSE file for more info.