Web development tree grows another branch

30 Apr

Apple’s iPhone certainly has one of the best mobile web browsing experience on the market today.  What does having a mobile version of Safari in your pocket mean to web developers?  Despite Apple’s best efforts in providing an uncompromising solution for mobile web browsing it means having yet another development platform to deal with.   Much to the chagrin of developers we are seeing websites developed specifically for the iPhone.  As an end user and someone who as you have probably gathered already thinks most user interfaces need a lot of work I don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing.  The extra effort in developing a platform specific version of your site can yield a completely different experience for the user.  It doesn’t hurt that Apple is gaining market share in the smart phone market either.

If a website is effectively designed there will exist a layer of abstraction between the database, business logic, and the user interface allowing flexibility to modify any specific layer.  I’ve seen this happen with back-end database systems, front end web servers and client application

I thought I would mention some websites that have effectively made already useful sites more effective with a mobile version version of Safari:

Digg – http://www.digg.com/iphone

Alltop – http://alltop.com/m/

American Airlines – http://mobile.aa.com

TripIt – http:/m.tripit.com/

Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/ (yes it redirects to the iPhone beta site)

Revision3 – http://m.revision3.com

Strategic Informatics – http://www.strategicinformatics.com/ (Also automatically redirects)

ParseAll – http://iphone.parseall.com

FlightStats – http://m.flightstats.com

Flickr – http://i.m.yahoo.com/a/flickr

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