UIEtips: New Rule – Every Desktop Design Has To Go Finger-Friendly

Jared Spool

March 12th, 2014

Josh Clark’s article New Rule: Every Desktop Design Has To Go Finger-Friendly reminds us that the web can be accessed from any device, regardless of its input or output method. For now, that means opening up all desktop layouts for easy finger-tapping.

If you want to convert your mouse-focused desktop sites into mobile layouts with touch-friendly screens, then don’t miss Josh’s virtual seminar, Designing Touch-Friendly Interfaces. It’s happening this Thursday, March 13, at 1:30pm ET.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Touch has landed on the desktop. A whole new category of touch devices is flooding the consumer market in coordination with the release of Windows 8: touchscreen laptops and tablet/keyboard combos. These new hybrid combinations of touch and keyboard create a new ergonomic environment… and fresh demands on designers.

Like tablets before them, the ergonomics of these hybrid gizmos demand UI conventions that depart from desktop layouts of similar screen size. The hybrids not only need big touch targets to accommodate clumsy fingers, but they also need controls and navigation conveniently placed where hands naturally come to rest. Designing for touch introduces elements of industrial design: physical comfort and ease are critical considerations.

Read the article New Rule: Every Desktop Design Has To Go Finger-Friendly.

How do you design for touch-friendly interfaces? Tell us about it below.

2 Responses to “UIEtips: New Rule – Every Desktop Design Has To Go Finger-Friendly”

  1. Rik Williams Says:

    Google PageSpeed Insights [1] has recently (~January 2014) included a beta for testing aspects of the quality the User Experience of mobile sites (like tap target sizes on controls). This is in addition to normal metrics for aspects page speed optimisation for all devices.

    This suggests that Google PageRank is preparing to include mobile UX as part of its weighting for search results. It’s also a useful tool for checking touch-friendly designs that you might be working on.


  2. Donna Says:

    I have not used Windows 8 yet, though I have occasionally seen it used by someone else.
    The article states “Cluster primary controls and gestures for hybrid screens around the bottom corners and sides. That’s one reason Windows 8 uses edge gestures to summon system and app controls. A swipe from the right edge conjures the system charms, and a swipe from the bottom edge brings up a shelf of app tools.”

    My question is does the OS functions over ride that of an individual program? so for example, if a application places the primary controls around the bottom controls, which function will occur?

    I’ll have to go to a Microsoft store and play around with it.

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