Adaptive or responsive web design is a way to create websites, landing pages, or Apps. Considering the growing number of gadgets and mobile devices, it is quite a cost-effecting and appropriate concept or better philosophy for building a relevant web page for different mobile devices.
You may ask: adaptive or responsive? To learn what approach is the most suitable for the project you're building, you have to know the differences between these ways, features, all the pros and cons of their nature. But before starting, think of AWD and RWD as about philosophies, it will be easy to feet the differences.
Each type of the above-mentioned design was created years ago, but the adaptive one is much older. AWD appeared in early 2000, at the beginning of Internet popularisation. At that time were not many screens, so this one was very suitable. The main purpose of adaptive design is to fit perfectly the screen of the user's device. Basically, for each screen, you need to create a static version of the page, which sometimes it's not cost-effective.
If you want your design to be more flexible and sometimes convenient, you can build a website using RWD (responsive web design), which is an approach that making rendering a page easier on any devices or screen pages. The coolest feature of the RWD is Dynamic serving, which is a setup where the server responds with HTML or CSS code with a single URL, depending on the user's device (web, mobile, or tablet).
Now the tendency is clear: adaptive websites are trying to convert (or include features) into responsive ones. Here is why.
Think of AWD as stable and solid, while RWD is being flexible and always in motion. For different purposes, we need AWD and RWD. Since the adaptive one needs you to develop and maintain separate HTML and CSS code for each layout, it's better to be used for complex web pages, for the website with ad spaces, online stores.
Responsive one is needed when we have it to be both pixel perfect, and flexible: landing pages, low budget websites, and service industries – all are suitable.
Websites and apps that are made with responsive web design are the most popular ones now. Here is why:
There is one huge minus in RWD – page loading, it's slower than the AWD. Adaptive web design also has its pluses and minuses you should know about:
The differences are distinctive, you only need to choose between a fast and fluid or solid and time-consuming approach.
For illustrative purposes, we'd like to show you some pages created with AWD and RWD.
Quite an old service, which is using AWD. Such websites are needed to be updated frequently and managed thoroughly. And to change HTML markup, you have to add some Java Script enhancements.
For a young medium-sized business, responsive design is what it needs: better implementation, SEO-friendly, and cost-effective building. No need to write any code, everything can be done within one layout and several plugins.
Responsive and adaptive web design can help businesses reach their goals. Depending on the company's size, features, and budget, both RWD and AWD can provide the necessary elements of the design. Before using any of them think about such things as: