It seems as if technology continues to become more innovative by the hour. Most computer products and gadgets are smarter and as small today as they have ever been. The days of clunky desktop computers and large hard drive boxes are dying quickly. If you find yourself only browsing the internet on your desktop PC throughout the week, congratulations…You’re becoming a unicorn. According to several studies and reports, people are using their desktop systems to browse the Internet less and less.
Consider the impact on development teams and processes. If you are designing a new site and primarily considering the desktop experience, you are missing a large component of your audience who may only experience your site via mobile.
Internet usage during 2016 on desktop computers has been below the recorded amounts for the same time period last year. The decrease in usage directly correlates with a large spike in mobile Internet browsing. Mobile devices alone seem to be the preferred method of online browsing for people nowadays. Mobile capabilities can increase the amount of time that people spend online, but doesn’t cannibalize the amount of time people spend on their desktops browsing the Internet.
The “Millennials” age group is a large demographic and market for the tech industry and has a big impact on the drop in these figures. A small percentage of them have ever even seen a desktop PC at all, much less own one. A large percentage of them are users of mobile devices, whether they use their mobile devices exclusively or consider themselves multi-platform users.
It’s tough to believe that Internet browsing on desktop PC’s will ever become obsolete. With the evolution of technology, it’s hard to imagine what the future holds in that regard. One thing is certain, the demand for Mobile Application Developers will continue to increase and we all must continue to reevaluate our strategy for building and maintaining desktop web applications.
Don’t design just for unicorns, make sure you have a comprehensive approach to multi-platform design.