As Sandstorm's Technology and Usability Director, Michael leads our developers and usability researchers in creating web sites and applications—both desktop and mobile—that embody our favorite blend: intuitive user experience and dynamic Drupal development.
Mobile First? What about Mobiletaneous?
I’d like to go on the record and claim the next catch phrase in UX and user experience design....Mobiletaneous!
Mobiletaneous is the art and discipline of building experiences for multiple screen sizes simultaneously, as opposed to starting from the mobile or desktop version. This a slight spin on the recent design trend “Mobile First” which was popularized by design guru Luke W. (Luke Wroblewski).
This is not to take anything away from the “Mobile First” philosophy. I’ve read “Mobile First”, practiced the mobile first methodology and extolled its virtues. There is no denying the expansive growth in mobile use, and the shift from desktop to mobile is indisputable. Any organization not focusing on their mobile experience is missing the boat.
However, as we’ve been designing and building for varying screen sizes, we’ve found it most useful to consider all screen sizes simultaneously. This applies to both the user interface design and front end development phases. It is particularly helpful when breakpoints for mobile, tablet and desktop screens are needed.
This approach ensures designs for all screen sizes are getting the attention and consideration needed, rather than prioritizing one over the other. Because at the end of the day, the most important screen size to design for is the one your user is using.
We’ve learned this is a more efficient way to develop responsive designs. It’s no surprise it requires more time (and budget) to design and build responsive experiences, but we’ve found the mobiletaneous approach to be the most efficient.
So our interpretation of the “mobile first” philosophy is slightly different. We believe your mobile experience is crucial. So is your tablet and desktop experience. That’s why we’re on the leading edge of the mobiletaneous movement.