Here at Position2 we have said it before and we’ll say it again: mobile is the preferred form factor for browsing the Internet. If you expect to engage with your target customers on their terms – when they want, where they want, on the device they use — mobile responsive sites are an absolute must-have, and ‘mobile first’ should be a core strategy.
We recently wrote about Google’s labeling mobile-friendly sites in the mobile search, a very handy feature. Now, working behind the scenes, the Mountain View search giant has taken it a step farther to give users a seamless mobile experience.
US smartphone penetration today is just shy of 77%. Over three quarters of the total US mobile subscribers now access the Internet while on the go. And that makes these users vulnerable to slow network areas and frustrating service. This has not been overlooked by Google engineers. Their solution, just introduced, is both simple and elegant.
Google’s ‘Streamlined Lite Version‘ of its search has been specially tailored for mobile phones caught in a slower data lane. It will automatically detect the slower network and display a no-frills version of search results for a keyword, i.e. stripped of all the usual bells and whistles. And the best part? No one has to download or update anything. It just is.
Here are two side by side images showing the slow interface on the left and the normal interface on the right:
For a company like Google with a near monopoly over Internet search, making search easier in challenging situations makes the company’s position even stronger. It’s called customer service.