Tagged phone

WPTouch: WordPress theming for mobile devices that just works

[simage=153,288,y,left,]I just installed WPTouch, the WordPress plugin that serves up a clean and simple mobile version of your site to visitors using smartphones and other mobile devices. A couple of years back, I tried to do the same thing with a different WP plugin, but at that point things just weren’t ready (for one thing, there were so many different devices and user agent strings that detection was iffy at best), and I ended up having to remove the plugin. WPTouch, on the other hand, was pretty much ready to go right out of the box.

[simage=154,288,y,right,]Immediately after downloading and installing the plugin, I tried to load the page on my Motorola Droid. Everything looked good without any customization. The layout is nice and clean, and the additional functionality for touchscreen phones is nice. For example, there’s a menu system that allows navigation by tag and category that’s very well suited to a mobile phone screen, and is a nice replacement for the wide and JavaScript-heavy popup navigation on the main version of this site.

[simage=155,288,y,left,]After initial testing, I enabled Google AdSense for Mobile, which was as simple as pasting in my publisher ID. The ads show up fine on a stock Motorola Droid and an iPhone emulator, but failed to appear on my Droid, which is running Bugless Beast 0.6. I’m not too worried about that, though, as I suspect the hacked browser might have an ad-blocker in there, and either way, I don’t see the Bugless Beast user community as being a source of significant ad revenue for me, so I’m holding off on investigating the issue further. For now, I’m just glad that there’s finally a plugin like WPTouch out there, that just works like it claims it does.

Google Maps now available on the BlackBerry

Google Maps are now available for a wide variety of mobile phones.

A couple of weeks ago, while preparing to slog through an almost impossible-to-read map on my Blackberry to find directions, I discovered that Google has made a mobile version of their map software available to Java-enabled handheld devices, including my Blackberry 7130e. For a full list of supported devices, visit this page. The software is pretty easy to use: just type in an address or business type, and the map will show you where it is and/or how to get there from where you tell it you are. It is undeniably neat to navigate to, say, Sandusky, Ohio and ask Google to show you all the pizza places in town, even if you’re nowhere near Sandusky, Ohio.

The interface is obviously much better, since it’s designed for the tiny screen of your phone or PDA, not a computer monitor (my Blackberry was capable of using the Google Maps page beforehand, but it took forever and was very unwieldy). You can save favorite locations or searches, and zoom in and out quickly and easily. In fact, my only complaint is that, while the software offers both a road map and a satellite view, you cannot overlay the two as you can on real Google Maps. Other than that, though, this is a worthy download for your phone. Just visit mobile.google.com on your phone’s web browser to get the app.

blackberry, cell phone, directions on a cell phone, find business, get directions, google map, google mobile, handheld, java enabled, mobile phone, mobile.google.com, PDA, phone