Articles about "Mobile design and usability"


buzzfeed-preview

Why the mobile-preview feature in BuzzFeed’s CMS should matter to you

When Dao Nguyen forgot to check a piece she wrote on a mobile device before it went live, she knew BuzzFeed had a problem. Nguyen is BuzzFeed’s vice president of growth and data, and “obviously it’s not my job to write a post,” she said by phone. But writing a big list post is a lot of work, she said, and previewing it on a non-desktop platform was a task easily forgotten.

Now when BuzzFeed authors click the preview button in their CMS, they see what their posts will look like on mobile devices as well as on desktop computers when they preview them, Nguyen said. That’s a fix that’s important for the site’s readers’ experiences, because sometimes writers use “embeds and large graphics that don’t scale down to mobile-sized screens,” Chris Johanesen, BuzzFeed’s vice president of product, said on the same call.

But it’s also important for BuzzFeed’s business: “Very often people discover our content on their phones,” she said. Read more

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Students at the University of Cincinnati talk on their phones in this April 2006 photo. Campus news sites are seeing their audiences migrate to mobile devices. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)

College websites seeing mobile migration, but not all are ready

Website traffic at the University of Oregon’s Daily Emerald was less than 1 percent mobile in 2010. This year, it’s 39 percent and growing. And while visits on desktops have more than doubled to 951,000 since 2010, mobile visits have risen from about 2,700 to 619,000 — nearly 23,000 percent — in that time. (Statistics cover Jan. 1 through Oct. 31 of each year.)

“I told our students that I think next year we will be majority mobile and the news editor asked me: ‘What does that mean for us?’ ” Ryan Frank, Emerald Media Group publisher, said in a phone interview. “It means we’re no longer digital-first — we’re mobile-first.”

It’s a similar story at Ohio State University where I serve as student media director and oversee The Lantern Media Group. The Lantern has seen its mobile traffic grow from more than 16,000 visits in 2010 to nearly 531,000 this year, marking a dramatic rise from 1.4 percent of traffic to more than 25 percent. Read more

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responsivedesign

What journalists need to know about responsive design: tips, takeaways & best practices

Phones and tablets have created new ways for audiences to reach our work, but they’ve also made it much harder to design a website that works for all readers. A site that looks great on a laptop might be illegible on a phone, while a sleek design on a tablet might look simplistic on a desktop monitor.

To make sure everyone has a good experience, we might be tempted to build different sites — one for phones, another for tablets, and a third for laptop and desktop users.

That might have been a workable solution when there were just a few mobile-device sizes to account for, but what about the current media landscape with oversized phones, shrunken tablets and everything in between? Creating different sites for each possible configuration is a daunting prospect, especially when new form factors seem to pop up every day.

This is where responsive design comes in. Read more

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Google Android Gadget

As Android tablets grow, publishers struggle to match the iPad experience

When the IDC forecast this month that Google’s Android operating system would soon surpass Apple’s iOS in tablet market share, publishers of digital magazines could be excused for some handwringing.

Since 2010, Apple’s dominance of the market allowed publishers to reach the majority of the tablet audience by targeting just one device: the iPad. But times have changed.

Thirty-one percent of American adults now own tablets, according to Pew. Much of the growth in the market is being driven by device proliferation, and many of these devices run Android.

The Nexus 10 Android tablet
A Google employee browses magazine issues on The Nexus 10 tablet at a Google announcement in San Francisco last fall. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

The relative affordability and portability of new down-sized tablets like the Nexus 7 offer more entry points for tablet consumers, but they present headaches for digital magazine publishers: How do they best reach readers on dozens of different devices with wildly varying screen sizes and processing power? Read more

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Sergey Brin

Google Glass is here: How to build news apps that get in users’ faces

Google Glass, a pair of wearable computer-enhanced eyeglasses, is possibly the next-big-thing in mobile computing.

Google co-founder Sergey Brin wears Google Glass glasses at an event in San Francisco in February. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

About 8,000 developers have prototypes, and the public is expected to be able to buy them soon. Early reviews are a mix of awesome and awkward — life-changing technology held back only by concerns about privacy and aesthetics.

We’ve been expecting this evolution since at least 2011, when Poynter friends and former fellows Matt Thompson and Robin Sloan created a futuristic video called “The Storm Collection” depicting a future where “photo frames, windshields and eyeglasses become heads-up-displays for information. Call them NUDs: news-up-displays.”

It’s here. Read more

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eyetracktablet

Tablet storytelling is visual, tappable, deep

Three years after Apple and others put digital tablets firmly into the hands of consumers, what do we really know about the way the devices are used for news?

Hundreds of people filed in to a large ballroom at South by Southwest last week for “Lean Forward, Lean Back: Tablet News Experience” to hear perspectives from Poynter research, focus groups and practical case studies from news organizations around the world.

The session brought together part of Poynter’s research team, led by Poynter’s Sara Quinn, who shared findings of the Institute’s EyeTrack: Tablet study, with Mario Garcia, CEO and founder of Garcia Media, and researcher/developer David Stanton from Smart Media Creative. Jeremy Gilbert of Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern was also on the research team.

“It’s essential for editors to rethink how the audience consumes content,” Garcia told the crowd.

The international news designer recommends a multisensory approach to designing for the brain, the eye and the hands. Read more

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What journalists need to know about storytelling on tablets

Poynter’s most recent Eyetrack study reveals some interesting findings about how readers consume news on tablet devices. During a live chat, Poynter’s Sara Quinn and Northwestern University’s Jeremy Gilbert talked about the findings and their implications for journalists.

Here are some of the topics they addressed:

  • How to create stories that satisfy mobile and tablet users.
  • The differences between storytelling on tablets and storytelling on the Web.
  • What the elements of “touch” add to a story.
  • What helps people focus on stories they read on tablet devices.

Gilbert and Quinn, who helped lead the Eyetrack research, offered practical tips and answered related questions from the audience. You can replay the chat, which followed a related News University Webinar, here:

<a href=”http://www.coveritlive.com/mobile.php/option=com_mobile/task=viewaltcast/altcast_code=b516e0c8d6″ mce_href=”http://www.coveritlive.com/mobile.php/option=com_mobile/task=viewaltcast/altcast_code=b516e0c8d6″ >What journalists need to know about designing & crafting stories on tablets</a> Read more

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ipaddesignlabsmall

Excerpt from ‘iPad Design Lab’: How tablets allow us to disconnect

As Poynter releases the findings of its latest Eyetrack tablet research, we are also excerpting an abridged section from Mario Garcia’s new book, “iPad Design Lab.”

Storytelling is the one thing that has not changed, regardless of how many platforms we use to practice our craft. With a good story in hand, the rest becomes easy.

A medium in its infancy, the tablet affords us the opportunity to examine and discover as we create apps. We know users spend considerable time with it and prefer it as an evening companion.

I was struck, when designing my first tablet app, that I was designing for the brain, the eye and the finger — and all at the same time. I pay particular attention to the finger, which I consider both unforgiving and impatient: It wants to touch the screen and immediately get results. It is up to an editor or designer to provide for this finger. Read more

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Haik: Washington Post web team a ‘disruption layer’ in the newsroom

At a London conference, Washington Post executive producer for digital news Cory Haik said the Post’s website will most likely be responsively designed by the end of 2013.

Haik delivered a keynote address at the news:rewired conference today at the headquarters of MSN UK. Her presentation, “Always in Beta (that’s good news),” highlighted several of the Post’s most notable digital initiatives  – including @MentionMachine and the White House Visitors Log.

Since at least one of the projects in her presentation was iPad-only, Haik was asked if the Post plans to get its apps and content onto other tablets.

“Responsive design is really the answer to most of that, and we’re moving in that direction,” she said. “By the end of 2013 we have a pretty good chance of being responsively designed on our site.” Read more

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Why the updated ABC News iPad app changes by time of day

Building a good app starts with asking yourself the right questions.

The most fundamental one: What does my audience want? That’s the problem that people at ABC News have tried to solve since launching an iPad app almost two years ago.

But the snag was, there’s not just one answer to that question.

“We realized that people are using the app in different ways at different points of the day,” Joe Ruffolo, ABC’s senior vice president of digital, told me.

So now ABC has started asking a different question: What does my audience want, when? The result is the new ABC News iPad app, released Thursday, which shifts to different formats at different times of day:

The updated ABC News app has different editions at different times of day.
  • Weekday mornings until noon, it emphasizes top headlines and weather — need-to-know information to get you out the door.
  • Midday, from noon to 8 p.m., it features updated news, adds some lifestyle and feature stories, and introduces more video content.
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