Friday, December 19, 2008

The small, small screen

The number of small screens is multiplying. This means that more and more people are accessing the Internet and viewing your web sites on devices that likely didn't consider when you built your web site and made tons of historic information available. Have you checked your web site to see how it looks on a small screen, like an iPhone or Blackberry Storm? Have you tried to search for digital assets using one of these small devices? Do your assumptions about how people will access your site hold true when they access the site from an Internet device that fits comfortably in the palm of their hands?

Now the good news is it may not be difficult to create a site that works well on a mobile device. Some of the design techniques you need to use are design techniques that you should be using anyway! And you can create a version of your site specifically for mobile devices; one that only they see. But first, you really need to know how your site looks and feels on mobile devices. So seek out friends and colleagues who have various types of mobile devices with Internet access and ask them to surf your web site. It may be painful. It may be educational. It will definitely give you something to think about (and work on).

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1 comment:

Russell James said...

Very interesting point. I hope we can soon be seeing statements like "this site best viewed with IE version xx, Firefox version xx, Netscape version xx, Opera version xx, and mobile devices." That would mean we are working to reach our users by creating websites they can see on their phones.

Thanks for picking up on this and bringing it to our attention!