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How to make mobile website for Android

best android smartphones

      Android holds almost half of the smartphone market cake. Being the most used mobile operating system, any mobile web developer that prides him or herself to be called that, has to know the system’s trickiness when making a website.

      Android’s smartphone market share

      Almost half of smartphone owners had a device that runs on Android (Nielsen).

      android smartphone market

      Samsung with the soon-to-be-released Galaxy S III or the Galaxy Nexus, HTC with the One X, and Motorola with the Droid RAZR Maxx, are the main manufactures.

      best android smartphones

      Web developers cannot that enormous market penetration. Understanding the insights of the system is a must. The main problem is that the Android market is highly fragmented, with a numerous manufacturers that produce a wide range of devices that have all sorts of screen sizes and specifications. Due to this device proliferation, it is very challenging for developers to ensure their websites and applications will work well on every Android terminal.

      The good thing is that Android browsers run on WebKit, an open source layout engine that allows browsers to render websites, although not all devices do it in the same way. However, it won’t be necessary to test our website on every Android device available in the market, if we take the most popular handsets into account, we would have 90% or the market covered. We have to draw a line somewhere here, for instance, screens less than 302 pixels wide would be put out of the equation.

      Create your website for Android

      Building your website for Android devices is not different from making it for any other operating system, using HTML and CSS and them use media queries to detect which device is loading the site and load a specific style sheet for each. Media queries cannot be reliably used to target all Android devices, though, instead, you should use JavaScript.

      If you already have a website and you want to do is to adapt it for mobile devices you can redesign the entire site to make it fit mobile devices using responsive design or you can create a new mobile version of your site, the easiest way to do it being by using a mobile website template.

      Have in mind the main characteristics of mobile devices when designing your website: Simplify content and navigation.

    • Be touchscreen-friendly.
    • Keep design clean and seamless.
    • Make it light to help the site load fast on slower connections.
    • Test your website for Android

      Almost every device comes with its own web browser, but truth is there are only a few you should care a bout when creating a mobile website since you can’t test it on every browser available out there. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular Android web browsers.

      android browsersGoogle Chrome

    • Opera Mobile
    • Firefox for Android
    • Dolphin HD
    • Miren
    • However, if these are not enough for you, you can always try with an Android emulator, a service that will test your site for you on the different existing devices without using a physical one. Most of this sites are designed for app testing, though and sites are not entirely reliable. Next we list some of the most popular ones:

      android testing tool

    • Testdroid
    • Duarlander
    • Apkudo
    • Perfecto Mobile
    • uTest
    • Keynote DeviceAnywhere

    • Categories: Android, Browsers, Operating systems, Smartphones, Web Design
      Irene N.

      Graphic designer

      19 Comments
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