From Claudia, quoting a new Pew Report.
“As is true of the population more broadly, smartphones play an especially prominent role in providing online access to blacks and Hispanics with relatively low household incomes. Only around half of blacks and Hispanics from households earning less than $30,000 per year have traditional broadband service at home. But 63% of blacks and 69% of Hispanics in this income bracket are smartphone owners.”
In legal aid, there is a concerted effort to make legal the information referrals and tools to be mobile first or mobile enabled designs and platforms. States like WA and Georgia and others where on the forefront of making their legal information and referral websites mobile enabled. https://www.washingtonlawhelp.org/
Going mobile forces you think not only about design, but also about how long people can be on a cell phone entering options or looking for information, since they are usually on the go. Can they do the task for 8 minutes? 20 minutes? Or will some stay on a tool for 40 minutes?
You also have to think about saving, downloading, and printing from a cell phone will work for those on the go–who might not be used to do this from a cell phone. Some of these issues don’t come up as often with use is on a desktop and with an attached printer, etc. In addition for those organizations that rely on .pdfs to provide information–this might require them to consider changing those resources to mobile enabled versions.
For groups interested in leveling the information gap this Pew Resource might be of interest as they craft their plans for keeping their online legal information relevant and accessible for ALL.