View Full Version : mobile website - doctype question

08-13-2010, 11:31 AM

soon, I am to build a web sbite for use on mobile smartphones eg bl*ckb*rry and Iph*ne etc.

Which doctype should be used? I wonder if the usual XHTML 1.0 strict is OK, and to use a stylsheet for media='handheld' or should I use a specific doctype?


08-13-2010, 05:19 PM
There is an XHTML mobile doctype which defines a subset of regular XHTML for those devices that can’t handle full XHTML. However, although I won’t claim any inerrability I have heard that most devices nowadays can indeed handle full XHTML so you won’t run into major problems. But I guess how a certain device is performing depends on how complex your website is. In any case it is important to provide proper alternative content, or use the approach of progressive enhancement (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progressive_enhancement) for your site(s) to provide at least basic functionality without compromising the information.

For example, the iPhone doesn’t support Flash so an alternative is mandatory. Also, many smart phones such as the aforementioned don’t pass themselves off as handheld devices, so a media type of “handheld” won’t help here, they just use the screen stylesheet (because they claim to display “the real internet”). There are ways to adress these devices with CSS3 media queries (http://www.w3.org/TR/css3-mediaqueries/) as described on Put Your Content in my Pocket (http://www.alistapart.com/articles/putyourcontentinmypocket) (and there’s a follow-up article (http://www.alistapart.com/articles/putyourcontentinmypocketpart2/)).

I hope that helps.

08-13-2010, 07:54 PM
Stephan thank you very much for that.

There isn't much flash content (yet) and for what I need, it wouldn't really be necessary for a mobile user.

Some reading for the weekend me thinks :)


08-14-2010, 05:39 AM
The browsers on the blackberry suck. I have a blackberry and I hate it. Sure it kept me organized but browsing online isn't great. The browser buckles on larger pages. It can use some kind of IE rendering engine. There were talks of Skyfire being made for blackberry but I don't think there have been any updates on that.