Web Development Best Practices for 2016

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According to recent statistics, www.statista.com, there were 4.43 billion mobile users across the globe by the end of 2015, and just over 1 billion tablet users. Add to these numbers the users of desktop personal computers, and reading devices, and the figures take on even more astronomical proportions.

Group of Business People Using Digital DevicesAs Vendors of mobile devices expect these growing trends to continue, web developers are addressing the ongoing issues of presenting websites that will improve users experiences and profitability, through devising best practices for 2016. More mobile devices are coming into the market, and it is becoming obvious that one size will not fit all devices simply, as was once thought.

New mobile devices coming on to the market in recent years, have brought new challenges to web developers which has resulted in the evolution of responsive web design. Today, however, with so many different feature phones, smart phones, tablets, reading devices and TVs, running on a variety of operating systems, leading web developers like Google, eBay, Facebook and Netflix are using Device Detection solutions with server side components, married to responsive web design, to improve their users experiences on all web capable devices.

More and more web developers across the globe are expected to follow their lead, in 2016, by adopting this practice, now known as RESS. By taking the best elements of adaptive and responsive options, and incorporating Device Detection, designers can create fast, lightweight websites with tailored content that is optimized for all devices. How can this practice help you and what are the advantages?

Advantages of Device Detection in Web DevelopmentGroup of tablet computer PC and modern touchscreen smartphones or mobile phones with colorful display screen interfaces with icons and buttons isolated on white background

  1. Knowing a visitors device and context data will allow you to deliver only the required information, thereby speeding up delivery of page loads to your users devices. This includes data in relation to bandwidth, screen sizes, orientation, browser, OS capabilities, and geographical data.
  2. Because your Device Detection solution only presents the resources necessary from the server relevant to each device, the browser does the job of rendering the website page quickly and efficiently, thereby avoiding congestion when users are using wifi in certain places like airports, for example.
  3. Web developers can ensure that on the one hand, only neat and tidy experiences are presented to feature phone users, whereas on the other hand, rich JavaScript content can be presented to smart phone users, and for TV users, tailored content can be even more media relaxed. Device Detection solution systems can inform companies of the exact media types each different device supports.

Disadvantages of Device Detection in Web Development

  1. Because leading Device Detection software solutions are often commercial tools, they must be licensed.
  2. The device databases that are utilized by Device Detection tools have to be updated frequently. However, Vendors make that easier to do because they provide cron scripts to download daily updates.

The advantages of practicing RESS in web development far outweigh the disadvantages. Server side detection is a cost effective solution to delivering excellent web experiences across all devices and adaptive design can increase your profits via the rapid growth of mobile traffic, especially if you are an ecommerce site.

Adaptive design makes it easier to optimize the purchase process on a mobile, maximizing conversions from users who have smaller screens and slower connections. In 2016, along with the development of more mobile devices, we can expect to see the practice of Device Detection and RESS growing in web development.




Chris is a father of 4 and works full time as a network engineer. He loves The Office, P & R, brewing (and drinking) beer, and of course Web Design and SEO.

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