News Around The Mobile Metaverse – September 1-4, 2015

Every day the Sourcebits team internally shares links to our favorite mobile industry news and stories. Many are related to mobile app design and development — others are just plain fun. Here’s a roundup of interesting stories we uncovered this week from around the mobile metaverse.

The Real Reason Everyone Hates Making Phone Calls Today
By Fredric Paul, Network World

When was the last time you talked on your mobile phone? When was the last time you sent a text? Fredric Paul bets that the latter is more recent on average because people simply don’t like making phone calls anymore. Why you may ask? Well, according to Paul, calling a mobile phone is an invasive act that people do not like to do. Add to that the fact that text, mobile messenger apps, and e-mail are so prevalent and you have the perfect recipe for disappearing phone calls. He even briefly compares the mobile phone to that archaic beast, the “landline.”

Google Gives Logo Its Biggest Revamp in 16 Years
By Brian Womack, Bloomberg Business

First Google changes to Alphabet and now Google has changed its logo. What is the world coming to? The tech world is increasingly becoming mobile-driven, that’s what. As a leader in the industry for more than a decade, Google recognized that fact and sought a logo for small screens. Google’s new logo is simpler, sleeker, and more mobile-friendly than past logos. However, the new logo isn’t all new. The classic four-color scheme, capital “G,” and tilted letter “e” were all kept. What do you think of the new look?

Is Adaptive Better Than Responsive Design?
By Carrie Cousins, TNW News

In the red corner, fighting for the right to web design supremacy, we have responsive design. And the challenger, in the blue corner, we have adaptive web design. Actually, the two design styles are quite similar and aim to make using websites on all devices easier. Responsive design indicates a website or mobile app that varies slightly depending on device, but offers a consistent user experience. Adaptive design, on the other hand, presents a customized web page to a user based on the device being used. The result of adaptive design can be a less consistent UI from device to device. As with many tech debates, there is no clear cut winner, each is effective for different purposes so it looks like this bout is a draw.

The Wires Behind Wireless
By Rick Wietfeldt, Network World

Wireless technology is anything but wire-free. All wireless devices are highly dependent on a complex set of internal wires to function. It’s no secret that the world is experiencing the golden age of mobile devices, and the trend shows no sign of halting. Billions of mobile devices exist around the world, and they all operate in a similar fashion. That is, they receive communications through an antenna and translate that to a screen, or to a microphone, then send a new set of signals back when they came. Each time a signal is sent or received hundreds of wires carry the message. Maybe a more accurate name for wireless technology is “wires out of sight technology.” Never mind that, a bit of a mouthful now that I think about it.

Design for Action
By Tim Brown and Roger Martin, Harvard Business Review

Since before the Egyptians built pyramids, design has been a vital part of human life and it continues to be so today. Although, the process of design has changed over time, from a sole focus on physical things at the beginning to include user experience, mobile app design, and website design. These are things that people interact with on a regular basis, yet they are not tangible things. Brown and Martin go to great lengths describing the state of modern design, and emphasize the importance of “intervention,” or the introduction of a new design to the public. Read on to find out why the authors might call the Great Pyramids “designed artifacts.” Yes, that is a pun.

Visual Faux Pas Explored
By Jason Tselentis, How Design

Continuing with the theme of ancient history, Tselentis evaluates the importance of cultural understanding for today’s designers. The author suggests that designers of all things, the physical and the digital, must be “cultural anthropologists.” Understanding the target audience is important, but accounting for others who may not be the target is equally as important. Put simply, men and women are different audiences, and when designing for one or the other, design ideas vary. However, just because you are designing for a man does not mean that a design can be insensitive toward women. The same applies to all different groups; cultures, religions, languages etc. Without awareness, unnoticed, potentially offensive design mistakes inevitably creep up.

Who’s Who On The Adoption Curve
By Gord Hotchkiss, Media Post

“What is the Adoption Curve?” You may ask. If so, this is the article for you. Hotchkiss explains the Technology Adoption Curve citing Ralph Lauren’s new $300 super shirt as an example. “Who wants a $300 shirt?” You may ask. According to Hotchkiss, the people who want the shirt are the people who need it least. Only a fit person would wear the slim fitting, health tracking shirt because they will look good in it and receive an ego boost from their above average stats. Rather silly really, but it’s the truth. As technology continues to weave itself into all things, those who adopt a specific technology will be a small population.

Coming Soon: Wearable Tech That Uses Your Body To Transmit The Signal
By Andrew Nusca, Fortune

Forget wireless technology. I want wires, but I want them attached to my body and I want to the device to run off my own biological energy. Is that too much to ask? No, at least according to a research team at the UC San Diego who have developed a prototype called, “magnetic field human body communication.” The device, which is 10,000,000 times for effective than Bluetooth, straps to the human arm and uses the human body to transit magnetic signals from device to device.

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Piotr Gajos, Chief Innovation Officer

Piotr is Sourcebits Chief Innovation Officer. A 2006 Apple Design Award winner, Piotr draws much of his inspiration from film and music, and focuses on leading our Innovation Strategy Workshops, generating new ideas for Sourcebits, and consulting on projects.