Posted by: mafrican | March 11, 2010

Mobile-friendly unfriendly websites

My all time favourite mobile app is the Opera Mini web browser. I actually gave up the iphone my husband bought me as a surprise because Apple refused to make Opera Mini available and forces you to use Safari instead!

I constantly have Opera Mini running in the background on my phone (now a Nokia 5700) and it’s the only way in which I access the internet at home and on trips. I find it a pretty intuitive, convenient and simple process. However, one thing that REALLY irritates me are the sites out there that automatically reformat their content when they pick up that you’re accessing from a phone. Not only do they reformat, but they “dumb down” the content and take away functionality as well!!! I could live with that if they gave you the option to “view the full site” and exit “mobile view”. And some actually do – examples being Google, Gmail, Facebook and Twitter. Alas, the vast majority of so-called “mobile-friendly” site are anything but!

There is some light at the end of the tunnel though, with the new “touch-friendly” sites that are starting to make their appearance (specifically Twitter and Facebook). Since my Nokia is a touchphone, it makes browsing and interacting via your phone a real pleasure. I honestly believe that in the very near future the phone will be the platform of choice to access content and services via the mobile web. It’s already the case in Africa. Come on website developers – rise to the occasion, it’s going to be a whole new mobile world wide web out there!

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