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No Place for Cellphones on the Web

Due to the fact that this article discusses technological issues regarding cellphones and their shortcomings on the web do remember that this article was published on May 2013. Some issues discussed will possibly get resolved as time goes by. But then again maybe the problem will continue to exist in one form or another well in to the future. It all depends whether cellphone developers get their act together.

Cellular phones are causing a new brand of problems on the world wide web. Mobile / smart phone optimization has become a huge issue for web-page developers in recent times as more and more cell phones are becoming internet capable.

I recently saw a survey asking web designers as to whether it was mobile phone companies responsibility to design cellphones that display web-pages correctly or whether it was the web designers responsibility to design web-pages that display properly on cellphones. The result surprised me in fact it almost angered me. I think you can guess why. The majority of the webmasters voted that it was up to the webmaster to design web pages that display correctly. This is absolutely absurd. Let me say this. If a new car company was to design a new car. Would it be up to the car company to make sure that the car can drive on our nations roads, or is it up to our nation and its taxpayers to rebuild and make changes to the roads to accommodate the quirks of a newly designed car by some company. And my point is. If mobile / smart phones want to get on the web they better make them functional it is not up to web designers to accommodate their pathetic shortcomings. Mobile and smart phone companies want to entice people to fully rely on these devices by adding gadgets to these cellphones, supposedly making them capable of everything. Some of these add-ons are free candy while others come at a price. But they are always castrated versions of the real thing. Photo cameras take better photos film cameras take better videos and computers are simply more capable than any cellphone. And for those of you who aren't millionaires and you actually want to talk to someone for longer than one minute and I mean anyone. not one of the three people you are allowed to talk to cheaply due to some agreement in your smart phone contract, or to people who are on the same network as you, than you need to use a land line. With landlines even those who aren’t floating in a endless ocean of wealth can actually talk to someone. Where as with a mobile all you can afford is to send a text. There used to be days way back in the archives of history when the average man and woman could talk to someone over the phone at a somewhat reasonable price, but with all this technological progress the privilege of talking has become rare and something only the rich can afford. This is anti progress. Mobile and Smart phones are a joke and I personally don’t use them. This just had to be mentioned before I get back on to the topic of Web design.

Mobile phone companies are firstly and most importantly only there to make money. They want to sell you stuff. Most don't support flash. Some of the big names on the web will develop apps you can download to enable your mobile to function on their site to play Music and Video Like the you-tube app. But most smaller websites don't have apps available and imagine if Phone users had to install a separate app for every website they visit. It is truly as absurd as it sounds and it is not the way to go. The reality is that smart phones and their browsers could easily be developed in such a way that they could support flash, Music Video and everything a normal web browsers on any computer can do. All the shortcomings of modern mobile web browsers are either part of mobile companies method of manipulating people to buy extra add-ons or perhaps because they plan to release a newer version of their phone some time down the track where the new version will support something the old version did not forcing the consumer to buy a new phone which has capability’s that could have already existed on the old phone or that could easily be added to the old phone via a software upgrade. It is either that or phone software developers are so incredibly stupid that they should ask the university for a refund of their education costs as they have clearly not learned anything. On lets not forget to mention the amount of unnecessary electronic waste these bastards are causing.

The conclusion to this article is. If phone company’s want their phones on the web they are to comply and develop phones capable of handling all the web has to offer in its full splendour it is as simple as that. The web is full of great and interesting web pages some of which have been around for a long time and have functioned perfectly well before mobile phones came along. The only adjustment a web developer should have to consider making for mobile phones, is a web page that is readable and usable on a small screen beyond that web developers should not have to make any changes. Just like new cars have to be able to drive on existing roads Phones have to work on existing web pages. Smart pones are to support everything modern browsers are capable of sporting there are no excuses. Why should millions and millions of web pages have to be rewritten because of some abysmal and pathetic Phone software developers can't do their job right of developing halfway capable phones with web browsers. Neither should we have to redesign web pages to entertain some cellphone companies capitalistic moneymaking ideas of purposefully producing inferior products with the intention of selling add-ons, upgrades or replacement products later on.

This is the web-page of Kaiser a Gothic / Black metal band and there is a pop-up music player on the music page. This is something one might expect on a bands web page. But at the time of writing If you are viewing this site on a mobile or smart phone this player will most likely not function. No music will play due to your phones shortcomings . When I have new site developed I make sure it displays well on small screens but it stops there. I will not go out of my way to accommodate shortcomings and ridiculous quirks on mobile phones. Neither am I going to have existing pages completely rewritten for the sake of mobile phones. Sooner or later perhaps this page will get rewritten when I decide to have changes made to it for whatever reason. In this case again I will make it so it displays well on small screens but I will not compromise it for the sake of mobile phones nor will I go trough any trouble beyond that.

Furthermore cellphones are not even consistent with one another. Web developers used to test web pages on all mayor browsers.

  • Firefox
  • Internet Explorer
  • Goggle Chrome
  • Opera
  • Netscape Navigator
  • Safari

All of these browsers are free to download and install on your computer. Webmasters would instal a version of each to make shore their web page displays as intended on each browser. With cellphones it is a different story. There are cellphone emulators many of which cost money, but to be sure you need to test the site on the actual phone. and if your site works on one phone there is no guarantee that it will work as intended on any other phone. Big players on the web like Face-book or You tube might test their site on every phone in existence but do you seriously think that every web designer is going to go out and purchase every stinking mobile phone under the Sun just to test out a website. There are many great non profit websites that were developed by private individuals in their spare time and they are not nor should they spend thousands of dollars purchasing mobile phones for the sake of optimizing their websites for cellphones.

In My opinion all cellphones incapable of handling the web should be boycotted by web developers web-page owners and the consumer. Don't let them make our lives more difficult Use a computer to surf the web. If Cellphones can't handle the world wide web and all it has to offer than they have no business being there. End of discussion.

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