Mobile Exploration [Task 8]

Strava. While I use the Strava mobile application very regularly, I had never visited the Strava mobile website until this task. It is very similar to the desktop site, comprising of a single column of chronologically organised data. The activity feed on the desktop site has two static side bars flanking each entry, the left of which appears on the mobile site at the top of the ‘dashboard’ screen, and the right of which (containing links to other functions of Strava) does not appear to be present. The information presented on the mobile site does not always neatly fit within the allocated information boxes, and more often than not there is a bit of ‘overhang’ on the right of each entry. In both designs, the Strava toolbar at the top remains while scrolling through activities, the only difference being that the menu requires more expanding to view sub-menus on the mobile site.

Car Next Door. After logging in to the members section of the Car Next Door websites on desktop and mobile, the two are incredibly similar. The site has been optimised for mobile by adjusting the layout to only be as wide as the mobile device screen (one content box at a time as opposed to the two side-by-side boxes on the desktop site), and many drop-down menus are automatically collapsed to save on space (and aesthetics) until needed. The ‘availability and reservations’ calendar is slightly easier to manage on the desktop site as the width of a computer screen allows for week views at a time, whereas on the mobile this is a month long, list style view. I personally access Car Next Door most frequently from a mobile, to manage my car on-the-go, and can imagine that the two appear similar so as to be just as easily accessible across modes.

ABC iView. A curious thing happened on Saturday night when I tried to search the ABC iView website on my mobile device to find a movie to watch on the TV; there is no ABC iView mobile site. Whereas the desktop website provides a search function, a TV guide link to the regular ABC website, and links to videos categorised under headings such as ‘Trending on iView’, ‘Watch Complete Series on iView’, and ‘Recently Added’ (admittedly these clips play through Adobe Flash which Rawlins (2016) notes as disqualifying a site from being eligible for a mobile friendly tag), the mobile site merely provides an explanation of why the only link on offer is to download the app. I tried vehemently to, as Rawlins describes, bypass the mobile website, wanting “access to all of the content and information” (2016, p. 70) but to no avail. Whilst I understand the practicalities inhibiting the iView mobile site from displaying all its desktop enabled content, an improvement could be made in including at least some features of the desktop site, such as the search function and TV guide, before turning users to the app.

 

 

Rawlins, B. (2016). Responsive web design. In Mobile technologies in libraries: A LITA guide (pp. 57-72). Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.

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