Mobile Web Templates and Guidelines

nokia.gifNokia have just announced that they have updated their mobile web templates that I first mentioned May last year.

The templates allow mobile web sites to be easily created that have a generic mobile look and feel. They can also be embedded in apps (read into a HTML control) but I wouldn’t recommend doing so as the look and feel won’t be much like a native app. The latest templates (v2) have been restructured for easier customisation.

While you are on Forum Nokia, also take a look at their Javascript Performance Best Practices that are also useful for anyone (not just Nokia related) using HTML5/Ajax/Javascript.

I still think there’s a general nieve belief that because authoring simple HTML is easy and readable on all platforms, it will become the de facto standard for mobile development. In practice, the templates show that there are issues with the UI. There are problems with browser fragmentation. The Nokia Javascript best practices also demonstrate coding can be tricky.

In 2007 I mentioned that we were missing the phone feature APIs needed to create HTML apps. This is still true today. As I mentioned later in that article, I believe that even when (maybe I should now say ‘if’) they become available, the complexity/differences of the APIs will percolate up to HTML to make development as difficult as native.

However, I am now starting to believe that it might be possible that future development tools will be able to abstract away some of these UI, Javascript and fragmentation complexities. It’s an opportunity for someone.