1. Platform differences.
The most important aspect of website design to consider is the platform in which the web page will be accessed and displayed. Not so long ago, the term platform used to refer to the type of computer used. Nowadays it has expanded to include any device used to access a web page. For the purpose of our discussion, let’s group the platforms into three basic categories:
· Mobile phones.
Each of these categories has certain distinctions that must be taken into consideration. Most of them are related to the screen size.
Identifying the target page size is one of the first tasks in website design. In the age of such varying platforms – from PC’s and laptops to tablets and smart phones – you will likely need to design multiple page sizes. Most websites at the moment offer two main page sizes – traditional web and mobile. Different screen sizes can change the viewing of a single web page. The same website appears on three different platforms – computer, tablet and mobile phone, even if the same browser is used to display the content of the website in all devices.
When accessing a website on mobile phone, there is much less space to be used to display the content. It is much easier to read and navigate on mobile, however the content is not as immediately accessible. This is the compromise of making sites available to mobile users, the number of whom is increasing rapidly. When doing so, the tiny available content area means that web designer must consider and decide what content mobile users will most likely wish to see. The other aspects of the site are still available to mobile users; they are just not the primary focus of the mobile site and are not immediately displayed on the screen.
In order to fully understand the differences between the screen sizes we need to mention how the viewport of each device works.
As we all know, on traditional PC the size of the browser window is independent of the screen size, which means you can shrink and expand the window as needed. However, it is impossible to increase the size of the window beyond the width of the monitor.