So what is the fuss with the “mobile
internet”. Is there any difference between the traditional
internet and the mobile internet? What if phones or small
screened devices get powerful web browsers? How does one
design a mobi webpage?
The answer to
all these questions can be found in the World Wide Web
Consortium and Mobile Top Level Domain Limited’s
best practices guidelines for mobile websites:
THEMATIC CONSISTENCY - Ensure that content provided
by accessing a URL yields a thematically coherent experience
when accessed from different devices.
CAPABILITIES - Exploit device capabilities. Do not
take a least common denominator approach. Work around
DEFICIENCIES - Take reasonable steps to work around
TESTING - Carry out testing on actual devices as well
URLs OF SITE ENTRY POINTS - Keep the URLs of site entry
NAVIGATION BAR - Provide only minimal navigation at
the top of the page.
BALANCED STRUCTURE - Take into account the trade-off
between having too many links on a page and asking the
user to follow too many links to reach what they are
NAVIGATION MECHANISM - Provide consistent navigation
ACCESS KEYS - Assign access keys to links in navigational
menus and frequently accessed functionality.
Link Target Identification
LINK TARGET IDENTIFICATION - Clearly identify the target
of each link.
LINK TARGET FORMAT - Note the target file's format
unless you know the device supports it.
IMAGE MAPS - Do not use image maps unless you know
the target client supports them effectively.
POP UPS -Do not cause pop-ups or other windows to appear
and do not change the current window without informing
AUTO REFRESH - Do not create periodically auto-refreshing
pages, unless you have informed the user and provided
a means of stopping it.
REDIRECTION - Do not use markup to redirect pages automatically.
Instead, configure the server to perform redirects by
means of HTTP 3xx codes.
EXTERNAL LINKED RESOURCES - Keep the number of externally
linked resources to a minimum.
SUITABLE CONTENT - Ensure that content is suitable
for use in a mobile context.
CLARITY AND CONTENT - Use clear and simple language
and information concise
LIMIT CONTENT - Limit content to what the user has
PAGE SIZES - Divide pages into usable but limited size
PAGE SIZE LIMIT - Ensure that the overall size of page
is appropriate to the memory limitations of the device.
SCROLLING - Limit scrolling to one direction, unless
secondary scrolling cannot be avoided.
CENTRAL MEANING - Ensure that material that is central
to the meaning of the page precedes material that is
GRAPHICS SPACING - Do not use graphics for spacing.
LARGE GRAPHICS - Do not use images that cannot be rendered
by the device. Avoid large or high resolution images
except where critical information would otherwise be
USE OF COLOR - Ensure that information conveyed with
color is also available without color.
COLOR CONTRAST - Ensure that foreground and background
color combinations provide sufficient contrast.
BACKGROUND IMAGES -When using background images make
sure that content remains readable on the device.
PAGE TITLE - Provide a short but descriptive page title.
STRUCTURE - Use features of the markup language to
indicate logical document structure.
TABLES SUPPORT - Do not use tables unless the device
is known to support them.
TABLES NESTED - Do not use nested tables.
TABLES LAYOUT - Do not use tables for layout.
TABLES ALTERNATIVES - Where possible, use an alternative
to tabular presentation.
NON-TEXT ALTERNATIVES - Provide a text equivalent for
every non-text element.
OBJECTS OR SCRIPT - Do not rely on embedded objects
IMAGES SPECIFY SIZE - Specify the size of images in
markup, if they have an intrinsic size.
IMAGES RESIZING - Resize images at the server, if they
have an intrinsic size.
VALID MARKUP - Create documents that validate to published
MEASURES - Do not use pixel measures and do not use
absolute units in markup language attribute values and
style sheet property values.
STYLE SHEETS USE - Use style sheets to control layout
and presentation, unless the device is known not to
STYLE SHEETS SUPPORT - Organize documents so that they
may be read without style sheets.
STYLE SHEETS SIZE - Keep style sheets small.
MINIMIZE - Use terse, efficient markup.
CONTENT FORMAT SUPPORT - Send content in a format that
is known to be supported by the device.
CONTENT FORMAT PREFERRED - Where possible, send content
in a preferred format.
CHARACTER ENCODING SUPPORT - Ensure that content is
encoded using a character encoding that is known to
be supported by the target device.
CHARACTER ENCODING USE - Indicate in the response the
character encoding being used.
ERROR MESSAGES - Provide informative error messages
and a means of navigating away from an error message
back to useful information.
COOKIES - Do not rely on cookies being available.
CACHING - Provide caching information in HTTP responses.
FONTS - Do not rely on support of font related styling.
MINIMIZE KEYSTROKES - Keep the number of keystrokes
to a minimum.
AVOID FREE TEXT - Avoid free text entry where possible.
PROVIDE DEFAULTS - Provide pre-selected default values
DEFAULT INPUT MODE - Specify a default text entry mode,
language and/or input format, if the target device is
known to support it.
TAB ORDER - Create a logical order through links, form
controls and objects.
CONTROL LABELLING - Label all controls appropriately
and explicitly associate labels with controls.
CONTROL POSITION - Position labels so they lay out
properly in relation to the controls they refer to.