I hate mobile versions of websites. And ITV’s dismal mobile site demonstrates why.
Why I hate ITV’s mobile site
There’s no way of getting to the real site
ITV has a good Twitter account called @ITVFootball. Here’s a sample tweet: “Morning all. Start your day with a bumper round of transfer gossip link”.
The only problem is that if you click on the link from your mobile phone, you’re forcibly redirected to ITV’s mobile site.
There’s no way to escape from it and access the normal site.
My phone is perfectly capable of handling most websites. Even if you are going to redirect me to a cutdown mobile version, at least give me the option of getting to the proper version.
I can’t find the content I want
So I’ve clicked on an ITV tweet and I want to find some ITV content about football transfer gossip.
There isn’t anything there. The only football related option is ‘FA Cup’ (well, there’s ‘England’ as well, but you’re forced to guess this is football related from the picture – so let’s hope you’re not browsing with images off …).
Click FA Cup, and you can get SMS Alerts for all Premiership teams. But you can’t actually reach any content about them.
The content is out of date (1): FA Cup
FA Cup? FA Cup? It was over 3 weeks ago wasn’t it? Why would I want to see this?
If you do click through, you can buy some videos of the highlights (NB you have to buy each half separately). Or you can click to see the semi-final scores. Or you can click ‘Previous results’ to see, er, the semi-final scores.
So what football information they do have is short, badly organised, expensive videos about a competition that finished 3 weeks ago.
The content is out of date (2): Britain’s Got Talent
Maybe people still want Britian’s Got Talent information, even though the competition is over.
If they do, surely they don’t want a ‘News & gossip’ section that has, as its latest news, something from 4 June. That’s nearly 3 weeks ago. Haven’t they noticed Susan Boyle’s recent problems?
Also, I don’t even understand the page anyway. What does ‘More Talent’ mean?
The content is out of date (3): England
So if you work out England is about the England Football team, you can buy some videos of the goals.
You can also click to see the Fixtures and Results. Except the most recent entry here is 1 April. That was nearly 3 months ago.
The content is out of date (4): Their own shows
It’s Tuesday just before 10am. Even for their own shows last night, the content is out of date. The recap section for Corry shows last Friday’s show – I can preview yesterday’s show (even though it’s been broadcast) but I can’t read/watch a recap.
The same is true for Emmerdale.
Even the help section is nuts
I clicked on help from the mobile site, and it told me that to access it, I had to text them so they could send me the link to it.
This is useful help if I can’t find the site – but not if I’ve clicked on help from the site…
Mobile sites in general
Here’s an argument about why you should have mobile sites.
Meanwhile, Jakob Nielsen says: “Mobile phone users struggle mightily to use websites, even on high-end devices. To solve the problems, websites should provide special mobile versions.”
Providing them is one thing. Forbidding me access to the main site, and forcing me to look at an out of date mobile version that doesn’t have the content you promised to show me is another …
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