or: A Developer’s Rant Inspired By
Months Years of Useless Websites
When making feature requests or UX suggestions, please, please keep the touch experience in mind. Things shouldn’t be hoverable, but click/touch/tap-able. Anything mouse-over- or hover-related will be completely useless, pointless, and inaccessible to mobile and touch users—and that user base is growing fast in pretty much all areas and industries.
As web application designers, developers, and suggestionators, it’s imperative that we keep mobile/touch users in the forefront of our minds while making UI/UX decisions. It’s an unfortunate reality that I see fairly often at work and elsewhere, that the touch experience goes completely unconsidered. Sometimes it’s blamed on time or budgetary constraints, but that’s BS. The biggest problem as I see it is a lack of education and caring, and a dash or two of hypocrisy. How often do we get frustrated when we use our phones to visit a website or use a web app that isn’t mobile-friendly? And yet, how often do we whip up some front-end code or make a suggestion to our favorite web app and neglect to consider touch users? I’m doing my best to correct myself in my own career and personal life, but I don’t see that same effort from my peers. And honestly? It makes me mad.
Mobile-/touch-first is a different mindset, yes, but not a difficult one. Think about it. No, really—think about it. If the smartphone user can tap it, the desktop user can click it. But if the desktop user can only hover over it, the smartphone user is completely left out. It’s an important distinction, and it bears repeating: If the desktop user can only hover over it, the smartphone user is completely left out.
Have a touch-friendly day.
Note: This is not directed at any one particular person or in reference to any one particular post, despite some language borrowed from another of my recent posts. I know there are already people here who are on board with the idea, and I’m glad for that, but there need to be more. You’ve all just witnessed the birth of a new passion. Don’t you feel proud?