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Mobile is different

Although they are often lumped together as computing devices, smartphones and desktop computers are very different: small screen vs big screen, intermittent vs reliable connectivity, low vs high bandwidth, battery powered vs plugged in, and so on. Given this list, one might be tempted to think of mobile devices as underpowered versions of ‘real’ computers. But this would be a mistake.

In fact, the reverse is true: smartphones are actually more powerful than desktops in many ways. They are highly personal, always on, always with us, usually connected and directly addressable. Plus, they are crawling with powerful sensors that can detect location, movement, acceleration, orientation, proximity, environmental conditions and more.

 

Given the many differences between mobile and desktop computing devices, it should come as no shock that designing for mobile is very different than designing for the desktop. From my workshops, I’ve compiled a list of 10 principles of mobile interface design that help people familiar with desktop design and development unleash the unique power of the mobile platform.

 

Mobile is different

Although they are often lumped together as computing devices, smartphones and desktop computers are very different: small screen vs big screen, intermittent vs reliable connectivity, low vs high bandwidth, battery powered vs plugged in, and so on. Given this list, one might be tempted to think of mobile devices as underpowered versions of ‘real’ computers. But this would be a mistake.

In fact, the reverse is true: smartphones are actually more powerful than desktops in many ways. They are highly personal, always on, always with us, usually connected and directly addressable. Plus, they are crawling with powerful sensors that can detect location, movement, acceleration, orientation, proximity, environmental conditions and more.

 

UECB1405251855_0-0_5mins_Split.mp4

 

Given the many differences between mobile and desktop computing devices, it should come as no shock that designing for mobile is very different than designing for the desktop. From my workshops, I’ve compiled a list of 10 principles of mobile interface design that help people familiar with desktop design and development unleash the unique power of the mobile platform.

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