There is literally a plugin for almost anything you want to achieve in WordPress. A quick glance at the WordPress Plugin Directory will show you just how many options are available. Admin, Ajax, Comments, Google, Posts, Sidebar, Twitter,and Widgets are all so very well represented that finding the right one can be a full-time gig. Twitter alone has over 200 plugins dedicated to pulling, pushing, and searching through its masses of data. However, before we can auto-tweet a post, or dynamically interleave links to Amazon products, we have to comprehend how a plugin works, and more importantly, how to install and activate them on our blog.
without you having to touch a single line of code, unless, of course, you want to.
WordPress Mobile Pack
By James Pearce
Why it’s recommended by cosmoread: Works great, even on non-smart phones Why it was picked: Skins both the blog and the administration, browser support
License: GNU General Public License
Manual Install URL: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wordpress-mobile-pack/
Automatic Install Keyword search term: WordPress Mobile Pack
Geek level: Webmaster
Configuration location: Appearance | Mobile Theme, Mobile Widgets, Mobile Switcher
Used in: Everything!
Requires WordPress Version: 2.5 or higher
Compatible up to: 3.0.5
Last Updated: 2010-12-8 Currently Downloads: 243,256
There are 6.6 billion people on Earth; 1.6 billion of them have cell phones. More and more of those 1.6 billion cell phones are browsing the websites. Some of them are smart phones with awesome browsers, but the majority of them use the older and far less sexy WAP (wireless access protocol) versions of websites. Designing a blog to work on the iPhone, Blackberry, Android, Palm’s WebOS, and every other cell phone variation would be insanely time consuming, unless you use WordPress Mobile Pack.
Not only does WordPress Mobile Pack make your blog easy for your readers to follow on their mobile phone, it also converts your entire WordPress administration into a nomad admin’s wildest fantasy. Edit, create, and delete posts, approve and reply to comments, and even switch your theme, all from the palm of your hand.
- A mobile switcher which automatically suggests desktop or mobile presentation, but lets users switch to the other if required (and remembers their choice).
- A standard mobile theme, crafted by ribot, a top UK mobile design team.
- A set of advanced themes for Nokia and WebKit devices, designed by Forum Nokia. These also look beautiful on Android, iPhone and Palm devices.
- Custom color variations demonstrating how the themes can be easily tinted with CSS.
- Standards adherence, ensuring that mark-up is valid XHTML-MP 1 and the site scores 5 on mobiReady.
- Device adaptation, including the rescaling of images, intelligent splitting of articles and posts into multiple pages, the simplifaction styles, and the removal of non-supported media.
- A mobile admin panel, that allows the blog managers to access the admin interface via a mobile device, with simplified access to the most common features such as editing a post or approving comments.
- A mobile ad widget to easily enable mobile ads with AdMob or Google’s Mobile Adsense.
- Mobile analytics, allowing you to track your mobile traffic with PercentMobile, and view simple local traffic tallies.
- A barcode widget which adds a barcode to your desktop site so that devices with a suitable reader can quickly bookmark your mobile site, or deep link within it.
- Automatic listing on mpexo, making it easier for users to discover that you have a mobile-friendly site. (NB: you can enable the mpexo listing in the ‘Settings’ dashboard menu.)
Its Mobile themes
Once you have installed WordPress Mobile Pack, you will now have Appearance > Switcher in your navigation. Use the Theme Switcher to select which mobile theme you want to use for any user visiting your blog from a mobile phone. The theme you select will not affect any normal computer or web browser users.
Browser detection and domain detection:
WordPress Mobile Pack offers two methods for determining if a user is using a browser on a mobile device, browser detection, and domain detection. Browser detection will leverage the information your browser sends to a website that identifies what type of device is requesting the web page and which browser it’s using. Domain detection allows you to use a subdomain like m.yourwebsite.com to display the mobile version of our blog.
Important Mobile Themes settings
The majority of setup options for WordPress Mobile Pack are located in Appearance > Mobile Theme.
Enable Nokia Templates: Nokia is still the heavyweight in mobile devices, the biggest selling point of this plugin over WP-iPhone, which focuses purely on Webkit-based browsers on Android, Palm Pre, iPhone, and now Blackberry. If you aren’t worried about Nokia users, then we would recommend using WPTouch that’s covered in the next section.
Check Mobile Status: By clicking on Launch ready.mobi, you’ll be taken to Ready.mobi’s service for validating. Now, your website is ready for mobile devices.
Number of Posts: By default, WordPress Mobile Pack will only show five posts per page. However, remember that the more posts you show, the longer your website will take to load on these bandwidth-constrained devices.
Teaser Length: A teaser is a sneak peek of content from an entire blog post. By default, WordPress Mobile Pack will display 50 characters from the beginning of your blog posts.
Remove Media: A lot of mobile devices don’t handle Flash, movies, or embedded frames very well. By default, WordPress Pack will remove these media references from the mobile version of your blog. It’s recommended that you uncheck this option as more and more devices can now handle videos from sites such as YouTube.
Shrink Images: WordPress Mobile Pack offers the option to automatically shrink larger images to help reduce the overall download of your website. If you are having problems with file permissions and don’t know how to change server folder permissions, you might want to uncheck this option.
Simplify Styling: In another step to ensure that your blog looks great across multiple devices, WordPress Mobile Pack will automatically remove custom stylings from your blog posts. More advanced users should most likely uncheck this option.