The BBC News on growing a responsive website

The BBC have been gradually investigating and adopting responsive web-design techniques to their news website, focussing on the mobile variant of the site. Initially I thought they were missing a trick by excluding desktop users from the benefits of responsive web-design. The reality seems much subtler however.

The BBC team describe their responsive approach on the Responsive News site.

In essence they are able to gradually apply the responsive techniques on the mobile site, without disrupting their massive desktop audience and legacy publishing platform. Over time the responsive site gradually grows in scope and importance until it can ultimately become the overall site, including for desktop users. A notable side-benefit is a nicely phased migration from a legacy publishing platform without a big bang switchover and all the risk that would entail.

Very nice. I’ll leave you with Brad Frost’s prophetic graphics that described this and which were reused by the BBC team:

Copyright Brad Frost - The responsive website as a seed, next to the desktop tree Copyright Brad Frost - The responsive website full grown, and the desktop tree is felled

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