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Mobile Web Development

Nirav Mehta

Building mobile websites, SMS and MMS messaging, mobile payments, and automated voice call systems with XHTML MP, WCSS, and mobile AJAX
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Book Details

ISBN 139781847193438
Paperback236 pages

About This Book

  • Build mobile-friendly sites and applications
  • Adapt presentation to different devices
  • Build mobile front ends to server-side applications
  • Use SMS and MMS and take mobile payments
  • Make applications respond to voice and touchtone commands
  • Learn XHTML MP, WCSS, adaptation, best practices, and mobile AJAX

Who This Book Is For

This book is for web developers who want to provide mobile support for their applications.

The book assumes some knowledge of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. The reader should also know a server-side language. The examples in the book use PHP, but can be adapted easily to other languages. The book does not use J2ME, focusing instead on using the phone’s web browser and other standard features.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Getting Mobile
What is Mobile Web?
The First Step—Understanding Mobile Devices
Mobile Data Usage is Exploding
Mobiles and Desktops
It's Not All Rosy—Mobile Devices have Limitations
But There are Many Ways to Do Mobile Web Development!
Bringing Order with Standards and Guidelines
Chapter 2: Starting Your Mobile Site
Pizza On The Run and the Mobile Web
Different Options for Going Mobile
Mobile Navigation and Information Architecture
Setting Up the Development Environment
POTR Mobile Homepage
Making a Call is as Simple as Email
Understanding the Homepage
Fundamentals of XHTML MP
Chapter 3: Building Pizza On The Run
Luigi's Pizza On The Run
Designing Layouts for the Mobile Web
Using Wireless CSS as the Silver Bullet, Almost!
Creating the Database and Code Architecture for POTR
Redoing the POTR Homepage
Form Elements Don't Look the Same Across Browsers
Form Processing Does not Change!
Taking Orders
Constraining User Input with WCSS
Single-Step Registration and Order Placement on POTR
Special Effects with CSS
Luigi's Pizza On The Run is Live!
Chapter 4: Adapting to User Devices
What is Adaptation?
Fancy Pizza Selection
Device Detection and Capabilities
Other Useful Tools for Adaptation
Chapter 5: Developing Standards- Compliant Sites
Running the Test
Creating the Structure, Design, Markup, and Navigation for Best User Experience
Best Practices should be Upgraded!
Most Good Styles of Design and Software will Work on the Mobile Web Too
Collecting User Behavior Data
Chapter 6: Sending Text Messages
Updating Order Status
Sending SMS Notifications
So What Happens at the Gateway?
Finding Message Delivery Status
Before You Decide on a Gateway
Sending SMS from Your Own Computer
Sending Bulk Messages
Chapter 7: Adding Spice to Messages: MMS
Creating a "Special Offers" MMS message
Controlling Message Presentation
Sending Multimedia Messages through Our Gateway
Receiving Photos from Customers via MMS
MMS's Potential is Yet to Be Exploited!
Chapter 8: Making Money via Mobile Devices
Getting Money through PayPal
Evaluating Mobile Payment Methods
Using SMS in Mobile Payment
Receiving Text Messages
Making it Easier—Payment Gateways Help get More Money!
Chapter 9: Interactive Voice
First, Some Basics
Designing the Call Flow of Our Application
Creating an Application to Play Audio
Making Choices by Key Presses
Handling Errors
Recognizing Voice
Writing Complex Grammar Rules
Selecting the Topping and Quantity
Confirming and Submitting an Order
Chapter 10: Mobile AJAX
Getting Pizza Recipes via AJAX
Adding Comments
I Want More AJAX on My Mobile!
Understanding iPhone Application Development
More Ways to Build Rich Mobile Apps
Chapter 11: Mobile Web 3.0?
Mobile Web Applications are Growing Faster than Humans
Mobile Widgets and Mobile Browsers
Connectivity—Mobile Networks and Occasionally Connected Devices
Androids will Invade Your Mobile Space Soon!
Is the Mobile the Next Computer?
Some More Analysis!
Resources for Mobile Web Integration

What You Will Learn

  • Build a mobile-friendly front end for your site – learn XHTML Mobile Profile (XHTML MP) and Wireless CSS (WCSS), the CSS subset supported by mobile devices; target the full range of mobile browsers; adapt automatically to the capabilities of the device.
  • Write interactive mobile applications – present and process mobile forms with different input types; support keypad navigation; get started with Mobile Ajax and JavaScript.
  • Accept payments online via mobile web and SMS using Paypal, SMS short codes, and more.
  • Integrate your application with SMS and MMS messages – enable users to send SMS and MMS messages to your site, process them, and send SMS and MMS messages back to your users too; set up your own SMS gateway, or choose an existing gateway provider; include slideshows, movies, and sounds.
  • Handle voice calls – respond to voice input, create touchtone services, play pre-recorded voice or use text-to-speech to provide voice-based software.
  • Future-proof your application – understand the basics of iPhone development, the Android platform, and the implications of other developments in the mobile space.

In Detail

As more users access the Web from their phones and other handhelds, web developers need to learn techniques for targeting these new devices. Sites such as Twitter, Facebook, and Google target mobiles with their services and products. Companies use mobile services to provide staff access to their applications while away from a computer.

This book is a complete, practical guide to writing mobile websites and applications. You will learn how to create mobile-friendly websites, adapt your content to the capabilities of different devices, save bandwidth with compression, and create server-side logic that integrates with a mobile front end. You will also see other methods for integrating your web application with mobile technology: sending and receiving MMS and SMS messages, accepting mobile payments, and working with voice calls to provide spoken interaction.

The book illustrates every technique with practical examples, showing how to use these development methods in the real world. Along the way we show how an example pizza delivery business can use these methods to open up to the mobile web.
Whether you want to provide customers and users of your public website with new ways to access your services, or build applications so that staff can stay up to date while on the road, this book will show you all you need to build a powerful mobile presence.

Technologies and tools covered in the book

PHP, JavaScript, AJAX, XHTML Mobile Profile (XHTML MP), Wireless CSS, WAP 2.0, Tera WURFL, MyMobileWeb, Mobile Web Toolkit, Image Server, GAIA Image Transcoder, HAWHAW ,, Nokia's Mobile Internet Toolkit , SMIL, Voxeo's Prophecy server, VoiceXML (VXML), grXML, Frost library,  WALL, WURFL, SMS, MMS, mobile payment gateways, mobile widgets, Mobile AJAX, Android, Google Gears, and Dojo Offline.


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