Access to HUKD from PDA - is it possible? - HotUKDeals
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Access to HUKD from PDA - is it possible?

Kommunist Avatar
1d, 6m agoPosted 1 decade, 6 months ago
A couple of days ago I tried to access this website from my MDA Vario. It was OK-ish experience but lots of graphics doesn't look good on small screen (320x240).
Is it possible to have simplified version for mobiles (like BBC mobile for example)? Text version, less graphics and (preferrably) no Java script.
Kommunist Avatar
1d, 6m agoPosted 1 decade, 6 months ago
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[admin]#1
mmmm excellent topic Kommunist. I was just talking this over the other day. What exactly do you need for a good browsing experience? Does it just need to be a 320x240 styled page? Should all the images be turned off? What other tips/requests would you have?

I just don't do this as I don't have a pda but I know more and more people are doing so.
#2
Just a couple of thoughts...

First of all - Java script is the most problematic issue. Mobile IE doesn't support it. Of course it is possible to use Minimo instead IE :)
Most of MDAs (I-mate, Qtek, SPV, XDA, etc) are not supporting 3G. In fact, the only one device that seems to support it (I am not talking smartphones like Nokia here) is HTC Universal (MDA Pro, XDA Exec, etc). So page loading time is an issue. Text only, no skins or at least - minimum graphics could help.


The problem is that site is using frames, so it looks as follows:
[Somewhat castrated menu]
[Loooooong list of "Deals by Store"]
[Deals - those in the middle frame]
[What happening on HUKD]
[This week's Popular Deals]
[Latest Vouchers]
[Copyrights, etc]

I would prefer to have it as follows (all as text):
[UK Hot Deals - this is list of deals from middle frame]. If this menu is clicked then it produces list of current deals text and picture, with simplified interface (for example, there is no need for "Problem?" button
[Deals by store - left hand side frame menu]. If you click this menu then you'd be presented with text-only list of stores.
[Vouchers - menu]. Again, if clicked then it shows text only list of vouchers.
[Forum - link]

There is no need for Amazon deals, RSS or similar. Deal Alerts might be interesting if SMS is used (not everyone is connected to Internet 24x7 from his mobile).
As to pictures - these won't do any harm as long as they are small. However, this is only good for those who (like me) got unlimited Internet access from his mobile. Others would have to kill pictures in their browser (yes there is an option for it).

On Forum page - kill right-hand side frames completely. Forums themselves are OK (it would be easier if these will be in text-only layout but this website only got 7 forums (apart from hidden ones, of course) so it is not an issue.

Reply form looks like this:

[Subject]
[Message icons - aligned vertically! so it is a very long scroll]
[Emoticons - aligned vertically again! even longer scroll]
[All buttons for codes, URL, etc - vertical alignment]
[Poll options]
[Preview and submit buttons]

In short, for new topics and replys it is better to use Quick reply form.

Do remember that i am one of the very few who got unlimited Internet access (T-Mobile web-n-walk) so I don't care about traffic (apart from GPRS speed, of course). But most of people are paying 2-3 quid per megabyte and with forum page being 50-100K it'll cost'em too much.

BTW, talking about traffic - my last visit to HUKD from MDA was something like 4MB of data!
[admin]#3
Excellent Kommunist that's the details I need to know. Give it a time line of 3 weeks to a month and hopefully I can have this in place. I know I've mentioned the upgrade that's imminent to you before which is quite close now so we'll roll that out and then this can be integrated much easier within it. I think initially it will be fairly easy to redo the front page cms before tackling the forum itself but I bet with some poking around I can find a modified mobile template for vB.
#4
Big thumbs up for admin :)

I'm impressed that you're given this serious consideration and a possible timeline rather than just a vague promise of perhaps considering it. If you need a hand testing any mobile portion of the site, I'd be happy to give it a blast (as will kommunist I'm sure), I have a few PDAs which are hooked up to the internet.

In general this site is fairly good for a PDA, there are virtually no adverts and the formatting is fairly 'thin' - it's a growing annoyance that many sites are becoming far too heavy in size for no benefit. One the main culprits for me is dealtime, when I'm in a shop and see something for a good price I like to use dealtime from my PDA to check but it's slow and the formatting of their site does not work well for PDAs.

John
[admin]#5
Well hopefully we can hold to the timeline more or less :) These days it shouldn't be that difficult to do things like this if the site is designed right to start with. Just css alone can solve 90% of the issues in making a slimmed down site for PDA's etc.

I also like the sms idea Kommunist but in that area I am an absolute newbie. I guess there are services out there you can subscribe to which send mass SMS?
#6
The "SMS idea" is just an idea - I do not know how mass SMS can be sent and how much that'll cost. But it might be attractive for many people. Another idea is to implement mobile version of price comparison based on three major websites: Pricerunner, Kelkoo and Dealtime/Shopping. I totally agree with Johnmcl7 that Dealtime looks awful on PDA and is nightmare to use. Pricerunner is a better but is a bit heavy.
I found price comparison websites being superb tool when you in store and salesman tells you about "greatest deal you will ever had in your life" :) A couple of clicks and you can show him that his competitor next door sells same item at half price :)

As to testing, I am happy to help :)
#7
Looking forward to that - I was browsing on my XDA exec last night and it struck me that a mobile site would be good.

Can't help with the technicalities of it all but want to offer my support to the concept.

Looking forward to the relaunch!

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