Considering that about 85% of results are mobile-friendly, Google dropping mobile friendly tag is a move that will work positively towards ensuring that the search results are cleaner. Initially, when only a few pages were friendly to mobile devices, the tag was very useful. Today, almost all pages are mobile friendly and this tag does not make any sense anymore.
To be clear, 85% of pages do not mean that 85% of websites are friendly to mobile devices. However, this number clearly indicates the significant rapid growth of mobile friendly sites. Most website owners are now working towards reworking their sites to be friendly to devices with smaller screens.
Google added the mobile friendly tag about 2 years ago as a message to web publishers and users about the direction the web was heading. In the past one year, mobile searches have surpassed desktop searches. The main reason behind this increasing number is the increase in the people using smartphones which can conveniently access the internet.
Though Google dropping the mobile friendly tag is big news, it will still maintain the ranking boost for mobile searches. Albeit this is the case, you will no longer be required to use the tag that tells users that the page is mobile friendly. When this change happens, webmasters will need to use the mobile friendly test to check if the site is mobile friendly.
This also means that the search results will have more room for lengthier descriptions. This is because the mobile friendly tag that appears in front of descriptions will be removed. The room can now be used for more characters and SEO keywords. This is space most search engine optimizers will be very happy to have back.
The announcement by Google made it clear that websites being mobile friendly is still a very important ranking signal. You will no longer see the sites that are not friendly to mobile devices because they will be lowly ranked. As mentioned, the popular sites and sites of the reputable brands will still be highly ranked. This simply means that Google dropping mobile friendly tag will most likely affect the small websites which is why you should ensure that your business site is friendly to mobile devices.