December 17, 2010

Google's Blogger Introduces Mobile Templates In Beta

In the seemingly never-ending battle between Google's Blogger and Wordpress for the supreme full-featured blogging platform, Wordpress has long had a big lead in terms of presenting a high quality experience on mobile devices. While Blogger simply laid out the site's standard layout on your small screen, expecting you to pinch to zoom or read extremely tiny text, WordPress blog owners could smugly serve up simplified versions of their blog for readers on the go. Today, that gap is gone, as Blogger has introduced, in beta, the first mobile templates for the platform, which are drop dead simple to start using immediately.

Available in the Blogger In Draft version of the platform, users are prompted to "make your blog look great" on mobile devices. If you choose to optimize your feed for mobile, instead of showing the standard layout, simply turn them on and click "Yes." A handy QR code sits next to the decision if you would like to preview just how your site now looks on the mobile platform.

You Can Now Optimize Blogger for Mobile Devices

Just Click Yes, and You're Optimized. That's It!

As you can assume, with millions and millions of Android and iPhone devices out there, as well as scads of feature phones, mobile browsing of the Web is becoming an increasingly important and relevant part of a publisher's experience, so there is tremendous value to optimizing for the small screens as well as the big ones, and now Blogger users, myself included, are no longer on the outside looking in.

The Blogger Experience On Mobile Devices

Once enabled, visiting the blog URL lays out the recent stories in a simple vertical stack, where clicking the right arrow opens up a single post in the mobile view. At the footer of each post, you see applied labels, with the option to return "Home" to the main screen or go to an "Older Post". And should the reader prefer, they can click "View Web version" to see the original.

A Common Question to Non-Optimized Blogger Users

This update, much anticipated, much awaited, is absolutely welcome. Now I won't get grumpy users asking why I haven't optimized my site for mobile instead of RSS.