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Smashing Mobile Web Development by Greg Avola

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Chapter 1: Introduction to Mobile Web Development

About 10 years ago, few people had a mobile phone, and if they did, the phone did not have a mobile web browser. Fast-forward to 2012. Almost 30 percent of the world’s population now has some mobile device that enables them to browse the Internet, chat, or send text messages (source: http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2011/11/smartphones-feature-phones/). Millions of people depend on their phones, not only as a device in which to hold conversations, but also to search, discover, and learn about new things while on the go.

With the total population of smartphones rising, businesses should be conscious about this opportunity to reach new customers. Once considered a luxury device, the smartphone is now readily available on most mobile networks at a reasonable price. In some areas, such as the United States, people use their cell phones as their main phone lines instead of the once common landlines.

More and more people are browsing the web from their mobile phones, and businesses need to find a way to reach new customers by making their websites, now commonly known as “web apps,” mobile friendly. Most companies develop websites for a desktop experience first; it’s hard for them to go back and rebuild the same experience for the mobile platform.

This chapter discusses relevant background information about devices and design patterns for your mobile web app. It’s important to understand these concepts at the start so you don’t have to ...

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