HTML and CSS Reference
The Mobile Web
Consumers are on track to buy one billion HTML5-capable mobile devices in 2013.
Today, half of US adults own smartphones. This comprises 150 million people, and 28%
of those consider mobile their primary way of accessing the Web. The ground swell of
support for HTML5 applications over native ones is here, and today's developers are
flipping their priorities to put mobile development first.
Even in large enterprise environments, mobile browser statistics are on the rise and
starting to align with their desktop cousins. We are still faced, however, with the fact
that one third of the Internet is using a version of Internet Explorer older than 9. Even
more sobering, in some cases, these early IE users can make up two thirds of the visitors
to our sites. This will get better over time, and desktop users will upgrade to newer
versions and better browsers, but as we push the Web forward and create amazing ap‐
plications across all browsers, we must also create a solid architecture that will account
for all users and give them the best experience possible.
The capabilities of web browsers mean everything to the success of our web projects
and products. Whether for fun, profit, or the overall betterment of mankind, it's im‐
portant to understand how data should be served up for both desktop and mobile users.
Finding the common ground across all browsers and figuring out which pieces should
be used in the construction of today's web applications is the goal of this chapter.
The Mobile Web refers to browser-based applications created for mobile devices, such
as smartphones or tablets, which can be connected wirelessly. Since 2008, the Web has
shifted toward focusing on mobile browsers, which are delivering an overall better
quality of life for today's web developers and users. However, this better quality of life
is sometimes short lived once you start testing your new mobile web app on the myriad
of devices and browsers. You may begin to wonder just what is supported and which
HTML5 features you should use to build your app.