CSS - Media Types


One of the most important features of style sheets is that they specify how a document is to be presented on different media: on the screen, on paper, with a speech synthesizer, with a braille device, etc.

We have currently two ways to specify media dependencies for style sheets −

  • Specify the target medium from a style sheet with the @media or @import at-rules.

  • Specify the target medium within the document language.

The @media rule

An @media rule specifies the target media types (separated by commas) of a set of rules.

Given below is an example −

<style tyle="text/css">
   @media print {
      body { font-size: 10pt }
   @media screen {
      body { font-size: 12pt }
   @media screen, print {
      body { line-height: 1.2 }

The Document Language

In HTML 4.0, the media attribute on the LINK element specifies the target media of an external style sheet −

Following is an example −

<style tyle="text/css">
   <!doctype html public "-//w3c//dtd html 4.0//en">
         <title>link to a target medium</title>
         <link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" media="print, handheld" href="foo.css">
         <p>the body...

Recognized Media Types

The names chosen for CSS media types reflect target devices for which the relevant properties make sense. They give a sense of what device the media type is meant to refer to. Given below is a list of various media types −

Value Description
all Suitable for all devices.
aural Intended for speech synthesizers.
braille Intended for braille tactile feedback devices.
embossed Intended for paged braille printers.
handheld Intended for handheld devices (typically small screen, monochrome, limited bandwidth).
print Intended for paged, opaque material and for documents viewed on screen in print preview mode. Please consult the section on paged media.
projection Intended for projected presentations, for example projectors or print to transparencies. Please consult the section on paged media.
screen Intended primarily for color computer screens.
tty Intended for media using a fixed-pitch character grid, such as teletypes, terminals, or portable devices with limited display capabilities.
tv Intended for television-type devices.

NOTE − Media type names are case-insensitive.

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