I am working on a mobile version of the new website for my company, if users visit my website on a mobile device/tablet, they will be asked whether the visitor wants to go to the mobile version or the normal version.

But on the normal version I have login functionality, so users can visit their data and so on. Should I "translate" that functionality to mobile as well? Do visitors login a lot on mobile devices, or is it a waste of time?

  • Let me put this back to you - Why wouldn't you include log in functionality? – JonW Feb 5 '14 at 11:00
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    Because inputting is more difficult in mobile devices, so you could consider other ways of performing authentication, or not doing it at all. I own a phone and I don't share it with anyone, this by itself is a token that can uniquely identify me. Of course if you provide information that should only be accessible to authenticated users, you need to perform some kind of authentication. – jff Feb 5 '14 at 11:04

The simple answer would be "yes, do it". But I think this is not an easy choice to make if you're asking that here.

So I think it depends a lot of the kind of service you are providing. For example, the facebook's app would be useless without login feature while I don't really mind if I can't connect to my smashing magazine account on mobile.

You should take a look at the website's stats. What are the most visited pages ? Without login in, are the users going to miss the main features ?

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The beauty about native mobile apps is the security that comes with it. An user, after downloading the app, will only have to log in once. It's safe to presume every time a person uses that app from that device it's the owner of the device.

Web apps (mobile versions of a website) can have the same security to some extend. You can store their information on the device (html storage) so they log in automatically when reaching your site.

You can assume people will want the same functionality on the mobile website, so they also want to 'visit their data and so on'. So a log in is required. But maybe, by storing their information, you can save time and irritation.

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  • Really? Safe to assume? I would say that depends very much upon the kind of data. There is a reason why people have unlock codes/gestures/passwords: not every one manipulating a phone actually is its owner. I would not trust any app that assumes and doesn't ask whether I want to stay logged in. And the reason may not even be the data I put in it, but the data the app gathers. Facebook? Twitter? Never! It would get to track way too much about me. – Marjan Venema Feb 5 '14 at 13:37

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