Designing for Mobile, Part 1: Information Architecture

How is mobile different?

The first thing we need to understand about mobile design is that it’s different – and not just with regards to size. The physicality and specifications of mobile devices impart different design affordances and requirements. Because mobile devices are lighter and more portable, we often find it more convenient to use them. Consequently, through this more regular use, we feel a unique, emotional connection to them.


Most mobile devices employ touch screens, where users rely on gestures – in addition to simple interface elements – to interact with them. Because of their smaller dimensions, we sometimes expect the content structures to be simpler and smaller. Also, because of their limited bandwidth and connectivity, mobile devices require designs to be optimized for loading time, with reduced data requirements.

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