Some of you might have seen me in Las Vegas at Vision Expo West, as a panelist for the 2nd Annual Click Conference. Part of my presentation there was showing how more people will be accessing the web via mobile internet than via their desktop computers sometime in the next 2 years. That is big….really BIG.
As a web design firm, we concentrated for years in making full use of just about every wiz bang technology to make our websites stand out from the rest. From great colors to Flash animation. We designed for ever more complex browsers, ever bigger monitors and ever faster internet connections.
There are a lot of things in life and in business where it is two steps forward and one step back. In some respects we are taking that step back. In actuality, we are taking a step forward. We are now working on sites that can be compelling for both desktop computers and mobile devices.
As much as we love Flash, it is a dying technology. First there was Apple’s refusal to allow the Flash plugin on their iPhone and then later their iPad tablet. Flash is both a memory and a battery hog. The iPhone and iPad command such a big market share in mobile devices we couldn’t ignore the fact that over 50% of the mobile browser market can’t see Flash. The next nail in the coffin was Microsoft’s recent announcement that the upcoming Windows 8 mobile browser for tablets and phones will no longer accept Flash either. Keep in mind, HTML 5 which is just being adopted will do much of what Flash has in the past and is viewable on all modern browsers. Finally, just this past week, Adobe finally faced the inevitable and announced it was ending development of Flash for mobile browsers.
According to IBM, mobile browsing this November will constitute a whopping 15% of all retail site browsing, up from just 4% last year. The growth in smartphones and tablets are allowing people to surf from just about anywhere, and they certainly are.
We are moving our customers as quickly as they are allowing us away from Flash and into mobile friendly technologies. We are also taking steps to make sure photos and links are optimized as much as possible for mobile browsers and that site navigation is easy for those on their cell phones. It is time for you to look at your website and make sure you are ready for this mobile tsunami, if not for this holiday season, then most certainly for 2012.
Article by Daniel Feldman who is CEO of dba Communications (www.dbadesigns.com), a Denver based web design, social networking, advertising, and marketing firm that specializes in eye care practices.