I’m often surprised by high profile sites that get a ton of traffic but don’t try to accommodate as many users as possible. I recently went on a trip and as we were traveling my friend tried to look at the Miami Dolphins website on his iPhone for a schedule.
As you can see to the right the Fins site on his phone isn’t the most helpful thing in the world. Flash is not yet supported on the iPhone so what do the good o’le Fins tell us… Get Flash… but we can’t. FAIL.
So here are two things the Miami Dolphins can do to make sure their website doesn’t stink as much as they did last year.
1) Continue to use a JS script to serve up alternate content, but PUT ALTERNATE CONTENT… Give me a link to the main site at least… only problem is when you go to the main site the site navigation is also in flash.
2) Now the first solution will help a lot but you could always check to see if the user was coming to the site with a nonstandard device like the iPhone for example. Easiest way is to use a conditional statement in your programming language of choice and check to see if the HTTP_USER_AGENT contains the word iPhone. Once you know that you can server up very targeted content. Like what is the address of the stadium, what time is the game, or what is the score of the game…. all things a user viewing your website from a mobile device might be interested in. Here is a link to learn more on some basic designing for the iPhone tricks.
If you are a developer and want to know what your site looks like on the iPhone and you don’t happen to own an iPhone there is two things you will need. 1) An Intel based Apple computer 2) iPhone SDK (Free)
Once you get those two you can look at your site on the iPhone Simulator provided with the SDK. Doesn’t the Gaints site look nice… get with it Fins.