HTML and CSS Reference
3. You traditionally used a ball or keys to navigate around a mobile
web site. Scrolling up and down seemed more natural than
scrolling from side to side.
We are now no longer reliant on using hardware-based controls to browse
content on mobile devices. The size, quality, resolution, pixel density/PPI, and
color depth of screens are increasing with every new tablet and mobile phone
released. We are seeing desktop browser engines, such as WebKit and Geko,
being plugged into the web browsers, such as Mobile Safari, the Android
Browser, and Firefox, found right on our mobile devices. This has helped
developers to produce stunning mobile web sites that look and feel consistent
across the now popular Android and iOS handsets and tablet devices.
In addition, the most recent mobile browsers also support GPU acceleration.
This means that mobile web apps can be much more polished and interactive,
as most of the rendering can now be offloaded to the graphic processor
(something unheard of until a few years ago).
Given the most recent announcement of Adobe axing Flash Mobile, combined
with the constant race to cram faster CPUs and RAM into mobile devices, it has
never been a more exciting time to get not just into the mobile web, but also
As a mobile web developer, you now have the chance to produce near-native
applications based on existing web standards for what feels like a miniaturized
Don't be fooled, however; the world of the mobile web still has a long way to go
in terms of standardization. So, throughout this topic I will be giving you
defensive programming tips to help you avoid common mistakes and
misconceptions when developing for the mobile web.
Before you start, you will need a tablet and/or a mobile Android-based device to
test apps with. You will also need a solid development environment to work
Choosing a Device to Test With
Although not essential, having a physical Android device, such as a handset and
tablet, at hand will help-----a lot. You can test your mobile web apps using the
Android SDK or a regular web browser. There are drawbacks to this, however.
The Android SDK is known for being extremely slow to start and sluggish to run;
and testing on a desktop browser will not allow you to test your web app on the
platform it was designed and built for.