Smartphone Browser Landscape

by Peter-Paul Koch

44 Reader Comments

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  1. Mobile browsing is just a ~4% of all the market… right?

    So I don’t think is critical for all website to have a full support of mobile… It will still make more sens to support IE6. Of course it depend of your audience.

    Any way mobile browser become better with a better support of the standard. Except “:hover”….

    I just don’t get why client are ready to paid to support iPad (0.2% of the market) it’s just a bad investment.

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  2. The best thing I can say here is that mobilcomplexity will most certainly raise your expense as a developer or designer and that absolutely should raise the cost to your client. Let your client decide how much testing they want to fund. If you don’t have a device in your toolkit, charge your client 100% of the cost of the device (without ongoing contract) and give them the option of waiving/reducing that fee to use an emulator for testing (when available). Be honest about the tradeoffs. When you do have the device (or use an emulator), charge a modest mobile testing fee and stash the cash for a future hardware upgrade when needed.

    Allowing your client to be the decision maker both educates them on the real world expense and complexity of making their site mobile friendly, and ensures that you aren’t unnecessarily bearing the additional financial burden.

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  3. As a web developer, smartphones are now realities, more forward daki think every developer when developing an application that not only will it run on desktop browser but also for smartphones.

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  4. YUI 3.2 is also an excellent option as a library for use on both desktop and mobile browser platforms acting as a robust abstraction layer between your own code and the browser. With progressive enhancement built into the core library it helps to get into that mindset of development.

    http://developer.yahoo.com/yui/3/

    Video: Satyen Desai — ‘A Phone, a Tablet and a Laptop Walk into a Bar…’—YUI’s Approach to Mobile Web Development

    http://developer.yahoo.com/yui/theater/video.php?v=yuiconf2010-desai

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  5. This is a great overview!
    However, in terms of future prospects it’s rather vague.

    Inability browse the net the way they are used to from their home computers and view their favorite sites makes people consider other options. Netbook is one of rarely mentioned smartphone rivals. Though it’s usually compared with a laptop, it has a lot in common with smartphones. It’s small, portable, and cheep. Most importantly, it’s perfect for browsing the net, checking your mail, and staying in touch with your friends.

    Few people will buy a bunch of brand new devices at a sky high price just to test several sites.
    And while the problem of standardization remains unsolved, netbooks and iPads are becoming more and more popular.

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  6. I have just recently moved into production for mobile sites and one of the first things I was tasked with was drafting a device classification and supported device strategy.

    This article covers a lot of the challenges I discovered through my research, and covers them well. This is a fantastic starting point for those who are moving into the fast changing world of mobile web.

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  7. The article implies that Apple wrote WebKit from scratch, and everyone else copied it.  Not true.  WebKit was a hostile fork from the open source KHTML project, part of the KDE project.  The engine, KHTML, is Free Software under the LGPL.

    Apple took the KTHML code, forked it, made a lot of (admittedly good) improvements, and then did not contribute their changes back upstream, or at least not in any useful way.  Various other parties then started their own branches off of WebKit (which, being LGPL, Apple could not close) and building their own browser variants, sometimes contributing features back upstream and sometimes not.  That’s why there’s so much variation between WebKit derivatives, which is a serious problem and will become a bigger problem in the future.

    That’s not to say WebKit isn’t a good engine (it is), or that Apple didn’t do good work with it (they did).  But to imply that Apple invented WebKit and everyone else just copied-and-broke it as the article does is simply wrong.

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  8. Here you can get much information about iPhone accessories, such as iPhone protective case, protective film, charger, cable, etc. All of which is not only the descriptions or images of a device, but also there are lots of interesting topics that are closely contact with our lives! In addition, you will also read the latest and current news from Apple as quickly as possible. www.iPhonestil.com
    (Source: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_is_iphonestil#ixzz1OlfC1JvP )

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  9. There are various infinity smart phones available in the market. Through which we can develop websites and also use for entertainment purpose. I having this software on my android phones.

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  10. I am not so sure if the separate mobile view will be a success storry. Browsers like Mobile Safari are already good in showing normal websites as you see them on computer, actually even better then IE’s before 9. I think mobile view and computer view will be the same in future.

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  11. Resources like the one you mentioned here will be very useful to me! I will post a link to this page on my blog. I am sure my visitors will find that very useful.
    Although I can’t really say I agree with going out and buying a fistful of devices in order to successfully optimize your site for mobile. Where do you even begin once you have your armory in hand? How do you manage all the little quirks in each OS/Browser and beyond that each version therein? Why neglect legacy devices?

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  12. I wonder how this works for the iPhone 4, which has a 960 × 640 resolution. You could use the only-rule with width:960px, but that means that all screens with a lower width will use this stylesheet. What is the best way to handle this?

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  13. Sorry, replied to the wrong article!

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  14. Thank you for this great, detailed overview. I agree it can be daunting and you need to stay up to date as it changes a lot. Thanks for including tables, they’re very useful.

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