Sunday, December 30, 2012

Is Your Blog or Vlog Mobile Functional?

My desktop is my primary way of using the Internet. I am slowly adapting to the mobile experience. It took a while but I now have a very simple, basic tablet that allows me to go deeper in to Android 4.0. Well, a phone based version of Android that was plunked onto a knock-off Asia inspired tablet.

(It was really inexpensive. I expect the tablet to die in five months. Don't buy cheap.) You will be sorry. Anyway,  I don't know why it took so long but I got a gander at the mobile version of my blog.

Oh, dear. This is what the mobile version of my blog looks like.

What Mobile Visitors Don't See

On the mobile version visitors of my blog visitors can only see the main body or a specific blog post. They cannot see the sidebars. They cannot see the tags for specific categories that they might be interested in or other website I've recommended for additional resources.

The good news is that I have other links at the bottom. The bad news is that they may or may not be what a new person to my blog wants to know at this time.

I can add links but I have to (and you need to) be aware that you can't load up each and every post replicating side bar links. That would be an invitation to be deep sixed by search engines thinking you are ginning up the system.

Video? What Video?

Yes, there is video on this blog. Not near as much as there should be but I do what I can. There are challenges when watching videos on tablets. For the record, the upper level tablets are not going to give you grief about displaying videos.

I beg to remind you that not everyone got an new iPad for the holidays. Still more people are on an older versions of Android or iOS tablet. You can't fix all of the concerns but you should be aware of them.
One of those concerns is HTML 5 video compatibility; not all mobile browsers have it or if they do the device that you are viewing on may not have the brain power to display it.

W3 School HTML5 Browser Video Compatibility Page

Using the browser that came with my tablet, a no-name blue globe thingy, I can watch videos with no problem but the search experience is dodgy.

I like Opera for mobile browsing, easy to use and quicker. Yet I cannot view videos at all, even if I go directly to Vimeo or YouTube.

Chrome? Nope I can't seem to install it on my tablet.  Firefox? Installs fine, is HTML 5 compliant but will not show videos.

You might have to consider an alternate link back to the video distribution pages.

And that is just mobile HTML 5 issues. I got more problems.

Android 4.0 and higher does not support Flash. Those on older Android systems can view Flash video content. Flash is going away but there are many older tablets that use Flash it for watching videos.

I see legacy obsolescence headaches just around the bend.

Not to mention WebM, Ogg Vorbis, older sites with Real Media content and goodness knows what is coming down the road.

The Mobile Functional Takeaways

I'll need to create a new referral section for mobile users that balances my need to mention my prior posts without making the search gods and goddesses angry. I have 800 posts to update; this could take some time.

Not sure what the final form will take. It might be just a variation of what I have been doing but now adding a category with two or more prior posts.

I will need to be more descriptive in the post, which comes back to possibly transcribing what is being said in the video. I have to think about that one.

Increase my sharing on Google+ and Facebook. Some of my potential visitors will never step foot onto an actual blog without getting exposed to it on their home turf.

 Other Posts of Interest

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