Here in Nigeria, designing or developing for speed and low bandwidth is very important because of our data limitation. Data is expensive for most people. This is why flat design is perfect for Nigeria, this is why simple design is even more useful than for just its intuitiveness—simple webpages load faster and use less data.
I’m discussing utility apps here. I believe frequently used websites — at least those intended to be — should be as simple as possible. Faster is always better. The problem with utility app homepages however, is that their they always want to show off some information for the new visitor. This is how it works, this is what it does, slides and promotions. But after the first time I use the website, I usually don’t need to see that information anymore. On many websites however, I have to load such content over and over.
Topupgenie is my favorite app to load up airtime, and recharge my phone and internet. In fact, I’ve not bought a physical airtime card since October 2013. However, every time I browse to the site, I have to use about 2mbs on information I don’t need. It’s the same images, the same sliding content, and I sure haven’t noticed it after the first time I went on the website. Yet it’s there, every time.
On days when I’m almost out of airtime and quickly want to top up, you can imagine what it’d be like to exhaust the rest of my data trying to log in.
I think data conservation is just as important on web when it’s needed on mobile.
Many utility apps, like TopupGenie, strip down their mobile versions to conserve data, but I think data conservation is just as important on web when it’s needed on mobile. So many other websites have their login forms on their homepages, along with loads of content. I, in fact, have designed many of those in the past. But I think the world needs a solution for this now, at least I do.
I think utility apps should provide a /login page. A page stripped of all assets and scripts and serves a simple function; to get me into my dashboard. The web will be a better place then.