Adaptive design is an elegant solution to the thorny technical problem of having to deliver a content experience on multiple devices. And engineers love more than anything to apply the same hammer to multiple nails.
Unfortunately, users do not agree. Desktop web browsers, tablets, and mobile devices are fundamentally different and are used in very different ways. Across our properties at CBS Interactive, we have experimented with a variety of adaptive and direct designs and are learning the hard way that a one-size-fits-all solution delivers a subpar user experience.