Mobile Design: 10 criteria for your mobile strategy
The future is mobile! Everything we do, we organize, we search, we play, we work at, we communicate…. everything will be done mobile! If you plan to make a mobile version of your website or have a mobile strategy, please consider these criteria and learn to avoid mistakes.
Double rethink the context of mobile devices!!
What are you usally doing with your mobile? When your speak of mobile devices, try to really think so. As long as you keep thinking of your project as a mobile version of your website, you will fail to gain users. They sit in meetings, lifts, walk to school, wait at bus stations, drive with their car… they are mobile. That means that you should to take a look at the following
- Bandwidth: Users mostly pay for KB and have data flatrates! Dismiss everything which isn’t needed!
- Screensize: Put your thumb in your display and measure the size of the mobile screen. Frightening, isn’t it?
- Distance to Screen: Have you tried to find something on a little screen 2 meters away?
- Mobile is cheap: BlackBerry, iPhone and Co are still premium products.
- Surroundings: To understand a sound or voise you probably have to have your ear very close to the mobile and loos visual contact to the screen.
- Weather: Do you have one of these notebooks which you can use as a mirror? The sun and other light objects will make your mobile design hard to see. Use big contrasts of colors and big font-sizes!
- Limited data input: Have you tried to fill out an contactform with your mobile? Offer different possibilities for mobile users.
- Mobile context: Again what are mobiles made for originally? To phone! Link phone numbers with special XHTML-Tags (href=tel:number), so that the mobile will instantly beginn to dial when clicking on the number. Nothing is more painful to write the number on a sheet of paper and retype it in your mobile.
- Pagesize: Limit your webpage not more than 20 KB including all images! Abandon all images you not nessesarily need!
- Technology: WML is out. It was made for Mobile 1.0! Use XHTML for Mobile 2.0 strategies.
You should test your mobile project in a real environment. There are a lot emulators for doing this. Since there are hundreds of mobile devices out there, you should at least test it in 10 to 15 real mobiles! Use it in the restaurant, parks and subways! After that you will make your project more successful than you have thought. Keep us up to date with your ideas!
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