Here are a few quick recommendations for dividing up the mobile world online. You can use the FREE open source MobileESP mobile device detection code to help you optimize your web experiences.
In general, I recommend having two versions of each web page. They can offer the same news, articles, and other content, but the UIs (especially around page layouts, navigation and search) may vary considerably between them.
RICH CSS DEVICES
A quick note on what I call “Rich CSS devices.” If you’re really fancy, you could show the iPhone version of the page to Rich CSS devices (like BlackBerries and Nokia phones), but there are… a few issues with such a plan.
Look at it this way: Why cripple the experience for your iPhone and Android users just so a few Nokia and BlackBerry users can see a prettier-but-crippled web page?
OPTIMIZATIONS FOR IPHONE THAT OTHER DEVICES CAN USE — OR GRACEFULLY IGNORE
As you may have heard, the iPhone has some extra smarts built into the browser. When you optimize your web site for the “iPhone Tier” of devices, the good news is that some of these features can also be used by other devices since most of them share the WebKit-based browser engine. Whatever the other devices can’t use, they will simply ignore silently and without causing error popups. Of course, I’m hoping that other devices pick up some of these unsupported features soon-ish. But in the meantime, don’t leave these out!
- Optimize the Viewport for Mobile Screenwidths: <meta name=”viewport” content=”width=device-width, user-scalable=no”> (Alternatively, you could turn on scaling, if you prefer. Helps ensure content is re-laid out when the user rotates touchscreen devices.)
- Set the Favicon: <link rel=”shortcut icon” type=”image/x-icon” href=”images/favicon.ico”> (Some mobile browsers store the favicon for the bookmarks list, too. Not used by iPhone.)
- iPhone Home Screen Icon Image: <link rel=”apple-touch-icon” href=”images/apple-touch-icon.png”> (The icon needs to be 57 x 57 pixels.)
- Run a Web Page in Full Screen Mode: <meta name=”apple-mobile-web-app-capable” content=”yes”>
- Content is Mobile-Optimized: <meta name=”HandheldFriendly” content=”true” /> (De fact standard, not used by iPhone. Tells search engines and mobile browsers the content is mobile friendly.)
- Input Field Virtual Keyboard Optimization: Tell the device’s virtual keyboard if the input field is for general text entry, an email address (<input type=”email” />), a telephone number (type=”number”) or a web address (type=”email”). Supported by the iPhone; other mobile browsers ignore these hints for now and default to plain text. [View article]
- Input Field – Turn On Auto-correction and Auto-capitalization:Sometimes you want these features on and sometimes you don’t. For example, you explicitly want them off in an email input field. Or you might want them on in a site-wide search input field. Here’s how: <input type=text autocorrect=”on” autocapitalize=”on” /> (Seems to be iPhone only)
- Rounded Corners: Don’t use clumsy images to give your boxes rounded corners! Instead, use CSS. All of the iPhone Tier devices can use the “-webkit-border-radius” and related CSS hints, so please use them!
- CSS3 No-Image Buttons: There are multiple techniques available for displaying custom buttons without using background images. They look great on the iPhone Tier device browsers.
FYI: This page has been translated into Serbo-Croation: http://science.webhostinggeeks.com/mobilni-dizajn