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Wikipedia Mobile gets a face lift

A growing number of visitors access the mobile site of Wikipedia and it is an area the engineering team is keen to improve. To do this, we are offering a more functional and polished experience adapted for mobile users, who operate in a much more confined world compared to those on the desktop.

This week we pushed several new and updated design changes to our beta. We hope these changes will provide a more professional look and a better experience for you. These include changes to the footer, a cleaner design for revealing and hiding sections, and a revamped full-screen search experience. The mechanism for toggling between desktop and mobile has also moved from the footer to the top navigation menu to the left of search to allow users to switch more effortlessly.

References can now be read in place

Full screen search

In addition to this we have also pushed an experimental feature which makes it easier to refer to references on articles without having to plunge to the bottom of the page. Now clicking on a reference will load an overlay which readers can consult without losing their place in the article.

We are keen to gather feedback to stabilise these additions and make these changes available by default to a much larger audience. In particular and as always, we are interested in any device-specific issues being brought to our attention as well as feedback on the new design. Let us know how you find the experience – good and bad and also the quirks that you discover.

We are also experimenting with animations when revealing references and would appreciate thoughts from the community on which is felt to work best. By default, references are revealed by a fade in/out effect but we would appreciate thoughts on whether a slide animation or no animation would be preferable.

Opt in to our beta and try them out today. We look forward to your feedback which can be provided either here or by your involvement in the design process.

– Jon Robson, Software Developer Mobile

2 Responses to “Wikipedia Mobile gets a face lift”

  1. anak malaysia says:

    There are still some flaws to work on. The Chinese version of Wikipedia Mobile needs the “simplified-traditional” toggle. The main pages of some language versions (Indonesian, Malay, Thai, Tagalog, Farsi, Urdu etc.) are also waiting to be complete with featured article and news columns.

  2. Hampton Catlin says:

    Woo! Finally someone got rid of my barely-trying design! No one is more relieved than me and I think it really looks great! Very minimalist, very modern.

    My only criticism is the icon. I know that saving bandwidth is important, but its just a little toooo compressed.

    Otherwise, awesome design overall!