Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Going Mobile

So you have a WordPress site and you want to make sure that it looks just as good on a mobile phone as it does on the computer screen.  How do you go about achieving this?  How can you give your WordPress site that “Wow” factor when users visit on their iPhone, Android, Blackberry, or any other mobile device?

EASY!  Choosing your mobile theme is going to require you to go to WordPress.org and do a Plug In search for Mobile Theme.  There is a decent number to choose from and it really boils down to finding that one that fits your needs.  However, keep in mind that there are currently NO BuddyPress compatible plug-in mobile themes right now.  That is a shame, as a working mobile BuddyPress compatible theme would be outstanding.

The first plug-in theme that I tried was from Crowd Favorite called WordPress Mobile Edition.  It is a simple plug-in that does the job, and just that.  It is stable, however.  A good starter choice.  It doesn’t have a lot of features, actually it has no features at all in comparison to my other two choices, hence why I stopped using it. 

My current choice, however, is a much richer experience with numerous options, including Google Ads support built right in to take advantage of mobile advertising space.  This wonderful plug-in theme is WPTouch iPhone Theme.  This is a very slick, clean and powerful plug-in theme.  It lets you choose from the “default theme” you set up for your blog, and it also provides a great mobile version so you can actually choose which one you will see on your device…on the fly!

One Plug-in theme that I am testing on my Old School Gamer Review site is WPTap.  This is a bit simpler than WPTouch to set up, but still has just the right amount of features to adjust to make this a great mobile plug-in theme choice.  Like WPTouch, it has the ability to implement your Google Adsense account to generate ad revenue with your site.  In comparison to the WPTouch, WPTap has a very different appearance.  I admit, I like it, but it is a tough choice to decide which of the two I “prefer”.  They both serve their purpose, and work wonderfully.

With these, there are several other choices on the WordPress.org search to try out.  I just like the two that I listed here.  You may find one that better suites your needs and gives you a better mobile experience, or delivers a look and feel for a particular audience out there.  Yes, I use a Moto Droid, and the themes I use are more akin towards an iPhone/iPod Touch experience, but they are elegant and powerful.  Go give one of these a shot and see which one you like.

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