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Northwestern On-the-Go Made Easier

New mobile site custom-built for growing number of smartphone users

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January 26, 2012 | by Stephen Anzaldi
Mobile Site
Check the new mobile site site at northwestern.edu on your smartphone.

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Smartphone users can access Northwestern University information more easily than ever with the launch of a new mobile website.

The new site, at northwestern.edu, automatically detects if a mobile device is being used and provides content in a sleek format tailored to the smaller screen of all current generation smartphones, such as the iPhone and Android.

Northwestern launched the site recently to meet rapid expansion in mobile Web user traffic.

Data shows the number of people using mobile devices to access Northwestern’s home page has doubled in the past year, from 2 percent to 4 percent of overall visitors, according to Alan Cubbage, vice president for University Relations.

“Although it’s a relatively small portion of our Web audience, the number of smartphone users continues to climb,” Cubbage said. “So we wanted to adopt early and stay ahead of the trend.”

The mobile site takes key information from the desktop version of northwestern.edu and presents it in a one-column layout with tabs featuring news and events, a menu of subject- and role-based links, email tools and popular links to buildings, parking, the shuttle tracker and a people directory.

Mobile users also are able to search a WildCARD Advantage discount locator and browse course offerings.

Future plans call for additional new tools, such as a campus bike rack finder. The Web communications group in University Relations is looking at making similar conversions of other top-level Web pages in the northwestern.edu domain.