Desktop Last

What are we so afraid of?

Why are smaller devices still treated as second class?

first click on fwa:

Where we start determines where we end up.

Desktop first isn't working.

Mobile First

  1. Address common concerns and misconceptions
  2. Explore what mobile first thinking looks like in practice
  3. Get you pumped about what could come of it

Legitimate Concerns and Common Misconceptions

It's not just for front end developers.

"Mobile hasn't reached the 50% threshold for most of our sites yet, though it's getting close."

"It's hard to argue that we should take this approach when small screens constitute a minority of traffic."

1. It doesn't speak to WHY the traffic is low.

2. It assumes mobile-first will be detrimental to the broader desktop audience

3. The data shows where we've been, not where we want to go.

"Skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been." 

- Wayne Gretzky

3 months

Pitch to Kickoff.

9 months

Kickoff to Launch

3 Years

Until the next redesign.

Where is the puck going in the next

4 years?

  1. Traffic Sources
  2. Emerging tech
  3. Legacy Technology

4. The numbers don't matter!*

*If we've already decided we're building SOMETHING from mobile.

Which approach is going to lead to a higher-quality product?

"I don't believe ...[mobile-first] necessarily leads to a higher-quality product (e.g., stronger design, higher impact, more usability).. [it's] not proven at scale."

TradeShift and the select element

" The concept of pickers first appeared when we started designing the new tradeshift from a mobile first perspective...

i.e. not trying to squeeze the desktop experience into mobile, but more the other way around."

Designing mobile-first
surfaced the problem right away.

How many other superior design patterns are waiting to emerge from mobile-first thinking?


A Theoretical case study 

"Strategy was all about mobile-first... we would design and build a great mobile site that also happened to work great on desktop."

"We felt they needed a smartphone compatible site that felt more like a family of native apps."

- Thomas Cooke, Rally Interactive


Is mobile first limiting?

"Mobile first is hard. It puts a lot of constraints on a project which we're still learning to work with. That can be frustrating."

 "We're gotten used to big/wide comps that make a big impression with the client. I don't know how to make that same impression with a mobile comp ... you want your work to make an impact."

"It may crush/make impossible a design approach we want to experiment with or pursue."

"It's not a challenge of technology. 
It's a challenge of imagination."

- Josh Clark

Touch screens




Accelerometers and gyroscopes



"The Only Limit... is Yourself."



Take, upload, and edit photos in browser on a phone.

In conclusion...

Mobile first doesn't mean boring desktop. 

The goal is better everything.

It means better everything.

4 Years.

Think about where the puck is going to be.

Our devices are incredibly capable!

 As far as what we can do with the technology, the sky is the limit.

The mobile (in-browser) landscape is waiting for us to shake things up.

It's just waiting for us to create something awesome.

I hope you're excited as I am to get started.


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