How to Change the Android Browser’s User Agent

I love using well-designed mobile webapps. But I hate it when a site blocks me from using its desktop version to do something the mobile one doesn’t support. Some browsers like Opera Mobile and the UC Browser let you change their User Agent header to impersonate a desktop browser and thus gain access to most blocked desktop sites. The Android browser lets you do this on a few devices and with some custom ROMs.  To see if yours does, press the … Continue reading

Why I Still Use Bloglines

I love what Google is doing for mobile; pushing the limits of device and OS capabilities with Android, championing HTML5 and the Web as the future of mobile applications and adopting a “mobile first” philosophy where new services are rolled out before or at the same time as their desktop counterparts. But I do have a bone to pick with the way one of Google most popular web services, Google Reader, works on mobile.  I really wish I could use … Continue reading

New Middle Web Sites: Techmeme and Google News

Techmeme, the popular tech news aggregator, launched a new mobile site yesterday.  The official announcement is here. I like what Techmeme has done,  The site, while targeted specifically at the iPhone, Android and Palm WebOS phones, isn’t turning anyone away.  You can visit with any browser you want.  I tried it using the Android browser,  a Nokia N95-3’s Webkit based browser, Opera Mini 4.2 and the old Openwave 6.2 emulator. I found that the new design worked just as … Continue reading

Bugs Kill the User Experience With the Post Office’s Mobile Site

The United States Postal Service (USPS) recently launched a mobile web site. Features include package tracking, a post office locator with information on hours and last mail pickup times and a couple of zip code search tools; one that gives the zip code for a given address and another which tells you what city a zip code is located in. For procrastinators there’s also a page listing the last date to mail holiday cards and packages to various destinations. For … Continue reading

Lots of Fail With CitiBank’s New Mobile Web Site

Citibank, the fifth largest U.S. bank in deposits, recently launched a mobile web site. Read more about it on the bank’s promotional page. This should be good news. Most of the other big banks launched mobile web based online banking sites a couple years ago. Citi initially chose to go with a Java app which only supported a few handsets and was further restricted to specific operator, device combinations. I can’t imagine Citi’s application gained much traction with all the … Continue reading

CSS Bug Spoils Useful Mobile Apartment Finder

UDR is United Dominion Realty which owns and manages a number of large apartment complexes in U.S. cities. UDR’s mobile site, should make relatively easy to find rental units in major U.S. cities with your mobile phone. With it you can browse by state and city or use an advanced search form that lets you filter results by price, number of bedrooms and baths and available amenities like a pool, air conditioning and whether pets are permitted. Searches return … Continue reading

Is the Web on Mobile Phones “Total Rubbish”?

Photo: Yummy Scummy by Zach Manchester – Some Rights Reserved There’s been quite a stir lately about the viability of the Web on mobile devices with various folks pronouncing it inferior especially in comparison with mobile applications. Yesterday Malcolm Murphy at Mobile Industry Review blasted; “Can we all admit that ‘Mobile Web’ is total rubbish? ” He pointed out that there’s a huge gap in performance and usability between web apps in desktop browsers and those on phone.  Specifically; Mobile … Continue reading

Globrix – U.K. Mobile Property Search With Lots of Listings

Globrix is a mobile Web service that claims “…to allow users to search nearly every property for sale or to rent in the UK.” I don’t know about that but it does have a lot of listings, 20,000 in London alone. The site’s advanced search lets you filter by minimum and maximum price, number of bedrooms, “freshness” of the listing, type of unit (house, flat or apartment) and radius from a town or neighborhood center. Listings include the price, general … Continue reading