App Design Process Question

When designing an app that will be used on phones, tablets and computers - do you design the layout for all three at the same time or just focus on one and then go back and make use of Context views to do the layout for the other two?

I’ve been focusing all my design to look good on the phone but know I need to go back and tweak it to look equally good for tablets and browsers.

I’d love to hear what method you employ and why you chose that way.


Would be interested in how you resolved this! I struggle with this question all the time. I have users who prefer one device over the other (office staff prefer browser but field staff prefer tablet/mobile). I often get requests to add more info/text when it appears in browser form but then my field reps complain it’s too wordy :sweat:

I would be interested to see how designers face this. Are there any examples, e.g. pictures or screenshots of designs that work? Or gallery for inspiration. The sample apps are useful, but would like to go at it from the angle of UI design.

I just deployed my app recently. I only have one item I don’t show on the phone because it can’t be used on the phone, creating a CSV file. I use the Context(“Host”) to show it on browser and hide it on device.

My app uses a lot of deck views and form views. I use tabs on mobile devices for my dashboard views. They look fine on the desktop. Personally, I’d rather have tabs on the tablet as well but it’s okay.

The form views could certainly be laid out better on the desktop with all the extra space. I wouldn’t need as many tabs to show all the data. For now, it’s not worth the effort.

The deck views are really ugly on the browser with the text strung all across the screen. We have so little control of deck views, at least for my ability.

My menus look strange on a large screen with so much empty space but for now, that is what my users are getting. I suspect I’ll get feedback from those who choose to use it on the computers. If so, I’ll evaluate changing layouts.

I only use icons for my menus. No photos or other graphics.

It will be interesting to see what others have to say.


Interesting - thanks for sharing!

My apps have very few images so there is little reason for me to use deck views at all. One of my apps has multiple tabs because it’s an order taking app - each tab has options and accessories that my users need to select. The original intent was to make it easily accessible on phones and tablets but the various options make it inelegant on phones. Tablets are ideal but not everyone has the latest software on their devices so desktop/browser is getting more influence over the overall design. But, the beauty of the app is having all the information synchronized between multiple devices. Can’t please everyone!

This is new to me! I’m going to have to explore this some more. My office users want to see additional information on their desktop (like description and product codes) but my reps don’t. And I had tried creating a different view for one specific user but it had a negative knock-on affect with the email templates and attachments that I gave up since it was beyond my skillset.

Another area I’ve to look into is how to improve the way data is produced on PDF documents. There are problems with how the data appears on Word document template and it’s causing consternation on the product floor. :sweat: