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Mobile device web site development basics?



3:57 pm on May 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I will be developing a new site. The other people on the project suggested we make a mobile version of the site. I've been making sites for years, but I had never made a mobile one. So I need some starting guidance.

1) widgets.mobi vs m.widgets.com? To be honest, I rather not have both a widgets.mobi and widgets.com site: it's hard enough already for people to remember one URL, I don't think we should have 2. So my question is: is it possible (JavaScript maybe) to catch the fact that the browser is from a mobile phone and redircet to m.widget.com version of the site?

2) regular css/html vs WML or XHTML? Do I need to use WML or XHTML? and if so which one? I believe that considering how powerful browsers in smart phones are, a regular html page should be enough.

I even think that with the zoom capabilities of phones, we don't need a real mobile version.

3) I read in a thread here:
as somebody who has spent a lot of time in the mobile space, your best bet is to just get a normal non javascript/ajax version working at a low resolution .. i.e. 240x320... this gives you a good enough start

Sound to me like a good suggestion.

So can my m.widget.com version of the site be just plain old html, with little graphics, and made for a 240x320 screen?

Or should we just have the regular version of the site, no mobile vversion and let people zoom?

Thanks a lot


5:29 pm on May 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Ok, so I went through the w3 document "Mobile Web Best Practices 1.0" () It was very informative, and a lot of topics it touches are also applicable for desktop web, when one is concerned with page speed (as it now has become popular since the big G put page loading speed in its search algorithm).

One thing though, the document specifies that we should use XHTML:

Markup Language Support

XHTML Basic 1.1 [XHTML-Basic] delivered with content type application/xhtml+xml.

Is this really necessary, isn't is safer to go with plain old HTML?


6:11 pm on May 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Alright, I might have answered my own question, I'll stick to HTML, considering this thread I just found in here: [webmasterworld.com...]


8:57 pm on May 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I think a mobile version is a good idea. Just make sure you have a link on the mobile version so users can jump to the full site if they want to. I use the XHTML mobile doctype for mobile sites.

<?xml version='1.0' encoding='UTF-8'?>
<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC '-//WAPFORUM//DTD XHTML Mobile 1.0//EN' 'http://www.wapforum.org/DTD/xhtml-mobile10.dtd'>
<html xmlns='http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml'>

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