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Publisher / Editor @ CloudAve and Enterprise Irregulars. Industry Observer, Blogger, Startup Advisor, Program Chair @ SVASE (Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs). In his "prior life" spent 15 years immersed in the business of Enterprise Software, at management positions with SAP, IBM, Deloitte, KPMG and the like.

9 responses to “Should You Redesign Your Website to 800×600 – Or Wait For Netbook Makers to Wake Up and Give Us Decent Screens?”

  1. Orochi DP

    I know it may not be your cup of tea, but try
    using Opera.
    The browser has a “Fit to screen” mode that
    EXTREMELY well. They had to do a lot of
    that to
    make Opera work on cell phones and the
    Wii, so it
    should work fine for your netbooks as well.
    I don’t use Firefox, but it should have
    similar. Both browsers are on both
    Windows and
    your favorite Linux flavors, so give it a shot.

  2. owen

    I have an eeePC 900 and I am using a combination of Firefox plugins to maximise the screen. I use TinyMenu, Locationbar2, and an alt key one that hides the locationbar until I press the alt key. The result is fullscreen without actually going fullscreen. And it works, it really does 🙂

  3. Sty Liskit

    My heart is in my throat with this one. Some sites like twitter can adjust, but where the web has become heavily visual, 800×600 might send us back to the text age.

    Would that be such a bad thing?

  4. Tom Doyle

    Firstly, I never suggest “switch” back, for me the time to move on to larger resolutions has not arrived yet. 12-20% depending on the statistics you read, is a huge chuck of potential visitors to your site that could have huge difficulty viewing your website.

    We wouldn’t be going back in time, because people are still using this resolution today.

    It’s not hard to design a site to look good in all of the most used resoultions. So it’s certainly not “downgrading” as you put it, it’s all about good design and trying to include as many people as possible.

    Leaving technology aside, what would you prefer, everyone that you hope to do business with see your site exactly as you want them to, or just the majority of them?

    For me it’s a no-brainer…

  5. Zoli Erdos


    First of all, thanks for coming over and responding here. I don’t have a lot of statistics, but I wonder if 10-20% is realistic.

    I looked up the CloudAve visitor stats, and 0.63% have 800×600 resolution. There’s another interesting number: 320×396, (is that the iPhone?) which 0.89% of visitors have.

    My personal blog (which has more traffic, although I suspect not for long) shows 1.55% at 800×600 and 0.3% at 320×396.

    All that said, I recognize we probably have more tech-savvy, gizmo-loving readers here, so the stats are likely skewed. But the reality is that we’re probably talking about 6-8+ year old screens here with the 800×600 max resolution, so we both know they are coming to their end-of-life soon.

    But I did not mean to sound ignorant, and the focus of my post was not about web-design: I wanted to speak up against manufacturers releasing new products (Netbooks) at what is clearly sub-standard resolution TODAY.

  6. Tom Doyle

    Hi Zoli,

    Yes it is realistic, again depending on your target market. A look across our clients sites shows ranges of 0.1% to 28% for people using 800×600 resolution.

    I do believe the day is coming that we won’t have to worry about 800×600 on PCs, but catering for smaller resolutions is a definite possibility.

    I don’t disagree with your post, I do believe we should move forward and device manufacturers should definitely move ahead too.

    However, your comment about me is taken out of context and not true to fact. As I stated, I never said designers should “switch back” as you put it. My post asks the question, should we move ahead when designing websites and risk cutting out what I would feel is a high percentage of users, when with good design, you can include all these users and give the same user experience.

    As stated in my post, most of our clients now request the larger resolution, but for me, it’s all the wrong reasons.

  7. Zoli Erdos

    Tom, gotcha, changed that “switch back”. 🙂

  8. bdk

    Orochi DP – Thanks for the tip on Opera. I just downloaded it for my Acer Aspire One – what a difference. Much better experience and website viewing than with IE!

  9. Juegos

    Super well written entry, bookmarked!