The mobile content ‘paradox’

November 7, 2011

How can people simultaneously want to kill time and get angry when their time is wasted? A conundrum to be teased apart. The solution to the puzzle lies in recognizing that even relaxation is purposeful behavior: according to information foraging theory, users seek to maximize their cost/benefit ratio. That is, people want more thrills and less interaction overhead.

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Two solutions:

  • Cut the fluff. In particular, ditch the blah-blah verbiage.
  • Defer background material to secondary screens that are shown only to users who explicitly ask for more info. Such additional content supports people who have extra time on their hands or an exceptional interest in the topic.

From Jakob Nielsen: Mobile Content: If in Doubt, Leave It Out

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