Integrating with IOS Services
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN IN THIS CHAPTER:
- Tapping into IOS services and built-in apps within your app
- Sending email and SMS text messages
- Mapping href links to IOS services
One of the most intriguing ideas when creating a web app for IOS is integrating the application with core mobile services, such as dialing phone numbers or sending e-mails. After all, when you break through those inside-the-browser barriers, the application becomes more than just a web app and extends its functionality across the mobile device.
However, IOS service integration is a mixed bag; it’s a “good news, bad news” situation. On the upside, four of the most important mobile functions (Phone, Mail, SMS Messaging, and Google Maps) are accessible to the developer. On the downside, there are no means of tapping into other core services, such as Calendar, Address Book, Camera, Clock, Music, and Settings.
Also, the exact types of services available vary according to IOS device. iPhone includes all of these features, whereas iPad and iPod touch are both limited based on their device hardware capabilities (that is, neither offer phone or SMS capabilities).
MAKING PHONE CALLS FROM YOUR APP
Here’s a basic example to get your feet wet in the waters of IOS service integration. You can make a phone call from your application simply through a special telephone link. A telephone link is specified through the tel: protocol. The basic syntax is the following:
<a href="tel:1-507-555-5555">1-507-555-5555</a> ...