Will wearables shape the future of web design?

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What are you plans for web design as the number, size, and capabilities of web-oriented devices grows?  What features could you provide to your audience on a screen the size of a postage stamp?

Every day, we face challenges trying to battle browser compatibility, functionality across multiple platforms and environments, and creating a comfortable, appealing interface whether it's on a desktop of 2560x1900 or a non-retina mobile at 320x400.  Most organizations don't have the time or resources to create entirely separate sites for each platform--nor should they.

In my experience, designing the mobile site first.. then, expanding out to larger resolutions is a great deal easier than trying to design for desktop and then cram everything in to the mobile experience.

In the attached article, Benjie Moss discusses how the future of responsive design will be molded by the types of wearables and the expectations we, as consumers, have for those devices.

EXCERPT:

The most notable thing about the Apple Watch is that it doesn’t have a web browser. It’s a fair bet that that’s the case not because Apple didn’t want to include a browser, but rather, because they couldn’t make it work.

Even with the spread of responsive design, the 272px by 340px of the Apple Watch are insufficient to display anything but a couple of lines of text. An architect could design a building that’s 15 inches high, but no one would ever use it, because the human body is a fixed size range. Apple aren’t the only company facing the issue. Android wearables are exactly the same size give or take a few pixels, and are equally ill-equipped for displaying the Web.

We can’t make devices larger because they become unwearable, and we can’t make them smaller because of our stubby inaccurate fingers. The cold hard fact is that the Web does not work on a screen the size of a postage stamp.

[...]

Sooner or later (it’s probably already happened behind closed doors) someone at Apple, or Motorola, or Intel, will accept that to dominate the wearable market they have to deliver the full Web in all its jQueried glory.

  • design
  • responsive
  • wearables
  • apple watch
author photo - David Longnecker by David Longnecker

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