As a sports fan and iPhone user, one of the sites I frequently access on my phone is  ESPN recently launched a new mobile site for iPhones, which is more robust and app-like than just about any mobile site I’ve seen.  As a reference point, below are screenshots of the ESPN mobile site in 2008 and today.


While they may not look that different superficially, the site today is much more sophisticated and user friendly than it was in 2008.  It is all about the details:

  • The new ESPN mobile site has become much more video-focused the last few years.  As you browse the site just about every section has the option to play video on your phone.
  • In 2008, the ESPN site just featured one top story.  Now the mobile site has a Top Story slider that allows you to cycle through articles in a manner similar to the experience on
  • The mobile sites navigation system has been optimized to work really well for touch screens.  In 2008 it was a bit mysterious.
  • The search is featured prominently on the site today, and the results you get when searching by topic focus on delivering the most timely information first.
  • The MyESPN area allows you to customize the headlines you see by team/sport, allowing easy access to the topics you care about.

ESPN has worked hard to create a thoughtful mobile experience that focuses on getting users to the content they need without any tension.  For me, the simplicity and focus on content of the ESPN mobile site is a not reprieve from the clutter that you find on and other news sites. 

About the Author
Todd Zeigler
Todd Zeigler serves as the Brick Factory’s chief strategist and oversees the operations of the firm. In his sixteen year career in digital, he has planned and implemented campaigns for clients including the Pickens Plan, International Youth Foundation, Panthera, Edison Electric Institute, and the American Chemistry Council. Todd develops ambitious online advocacy programs, manages crises, implements online marketing strategies, and develops custom applications and software. He is bad at golf though.