W3C releases Mobile Web Application Best Practices guidelines
By Paul Ridden
December 16, 2010
Whether it's due to improvements in our smartphones or the rise of tablet computers, one thing's for sure – mobile Internet usage is on the rise. That's welcome news for the vast number of web developers looking to break into the applications market. Of course, making sure that a new application works correctly across the various mobile platforms can be a bit of a coding nightmare. Happily, help is at hand in the form of a new mobile web standard developed by the international community working to make the web accessible for all.
There's nothing more frustrating for those who write the code that makes the web work than developing an application that works fine on one platform but not on another. Thanks to the efforts of stakeholders brought together by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), such things have just been made a little less bothersome. A new set of guidelines has been drawn up to help developers create smarter applications that will work across various mobile platforms.
Based on proposals from browser vendors, telecommunication companies and web developers, the Mobile Web Application Best Practices standard includes advice on such things as using the appropriate web protocol to help reduce the strain on networks, making sure users know about the use of personal information, ensuring a consistent user experience across various devices and designing an application for maximum flexibility.
The W3C says that the new guidelines, together with the Mobile Web Best Practices standard, will help coders design dynamic mobile Web applications and services that are efficient, well-suited to different contexts, and which boost the overall mobile user experience.
Stakeholders such as AT&T;, The Boeing Company, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom, Google, Nokia, Opera Software, and Vodafone have all voiced their support for the new standard.
The W3C has created a set of online cards which summarize the main points of the main document, and are available in English, French, Korean, Spanish and Swedish.