Chapter 2. A Technical Overview of the Mobile Web

WHAT'S IN THIS CHAPTER?

  • The technical capabilities and limitations of mobile devices and browsers

  • Learning about the way in which mobile networks affect the way you should approach mobile web development

  • Reviewing a number of other mobile technologies and how they might be used to complement your mobile web initiatives

As indicated in the preceding chapter, the mobile web is a significant development in the way in which humans can access information and communicate with each other. It can deliver exciting services, data, and entertainment to billions of mobile devices around the world.

Of course, it's not magic, and the medium of the mobile web is firmly rooted in the technologies that are required to make sites, pages, and content reach the users' screens. In this chapter, you will look at those technologies.

The good news is that much of the technical foundation of the mobile web is shared with the traditional Web. Much of the terminology will be familiar to anyone who has worked with web technology or held a mobile device.

The bad news is that all is not quite what it seems! Many of the technical capabilities that you might take for granted on the traditional Web simply don't apply on the mobile web or are inappropriate. The mobile device that a user holds in her hand may be a powerful piece of consumer electronics, but that doesn't mean the browser software running on it bears much relationship to the one she has running on her PC, ...

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