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Jammer’s Reviews & Blog go mobile

In my ongoing quest to keep up with the times, I’ve installed a mobile edition for Jammer’s Reviews & Blog, which is a version of the site intended to be friendly to on-the-go handheld devices like smart phones.

Jammer Goes Mobile
You can now read Jammer’s Reviews & Blog on your mobile device.

This initiative was prompted largely by the fact that a few months ago I finally upgraded my cell phone to a smart phone and broke down for mobile Internet. I’ve found myself using my phone for Internet access more than I thought I would. The next logical step was to make my own sites more friendly for mobile devices, now that I could test on one.

I thought it would be a quick project that would take a few hours. It ended up taking a few hours every day over the past week.

The initiative stopped short of retooling my site’s underlying structure. Some structural changes were made, but for the most part I shaped the mobile edition’s code around my existing site, not vice versa.

As a result, this may not be the optimum solution for all mobile devices. For starters, I had little choice (short of tearing up my site and starting over, which was not an option) but to rely on session cookies to force the mobile version to persist from page to page. Cookies might not be supported on all mobile browsers. I’m honestly not sure what the percentages are out there for phones that support cookies versus those that don’t — although my guess is that cookie support is increasing in the mobile world every day. I also relied a lot on CSS for styling of the mobile site, and used an ever-so-slight amount of JavaScript (mostly out of laziness, for “back” links).

So, your mileage may vary. I only tested on one type of phone (my Samsung Rogue), but since my site is almost all text, the display results should be similar on most devices. The keys, I think, will be cookie support and perhaps background and font colors. I opted to carry the black background through to the mobile site, which looks nice on my phone. On your phone I can only guess.

I’d be interested in hearing from people who have mobile devices to see whether the site works for them. Please feel free to leave comments below.


5 Comments
  1. kjlovercio - Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 2:43 pm

    The mobile version looks nice and tidy on the Apple iPhone (first generation). Very simple and easy to use. Very organized. Although I also checked the main page on my iPhone and that seems to work just as well. The font and text are easy to read.

    But if I’m on the go I’ll probably use the mobile version so I don’t have to wait through the ads, pictures, and exc. to load over on my wireless network. But overall I like the mobile version. Just like reading it on my computer screen but with much smaller screen. Good integration.

  2. Bryan - Wednesday, December 16, 2009 - 5:05 pm

    Huh. Well, it does seem to work on this phone at least (an unlocked G1 running the newest Android that will actually work on it, 1.something).

    No, not the Droid — that sucker only works on CDMA… :-)

    And yes, I did type this on the phone. Though I had to turn off the mobile version of the site to do it, since neither the comments nor the comment entry form show up there. That may be intentional though.

    Anyway, apart from the font being a bit small (which I can fix via the browser’s zoom, I just have to redo it for every page), and apart from my typing being really slow on this keyboard, it works. :-)

  3. Joe H - Friday, December 18, 2009 - 8:18 pm

    Still using my Palm TX, and this worked perfectly. Font was great for me. It will be nice to use when I restart the BSG Blu-ray collection after Christmas… if my wife got the one thing I asked for!!!

  4. Tim C - Saturday, December 19, 2009 - 5:17 am

    Works fine on the Palm Pre, but I’m disappointed that it’s basically illegible in portrait mode (see screenshot here: http://i739.photobucket.com/albums/xx37/freakout87/photos-temp-0jpg-1.jpg )

    Any chance of upping the font size a bit?

  5. Jammer - Sunday, December 20, 2009 - 2:14 pm

    Hmmm. On my phone in portrait mode, the font remains the same size as it does in landscape. It just wraps to fit the screen. So the font on your Palm Pre is readable in landscape mode?

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