Formatting my blog for the iPhone

Last night Matthew Oliphant recommended iWPhone, an easy WordPress plugin that “automatically reformats your blog’s content for optimized viewing on Apple’s iPhone and iPod touch.” I tried it out this morning and here are the results:

With the plugin:

whitney hess blog on iphone with iwphone plugin

Without the plugin:

whitney hess blog on iphone

So… which one do you all prefer?

Big thanks to Daniel Sandler for the images.

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  1. says

    (Happy to help.)

    So, I’m of two minds about the whole formatted-for-iPhone thing.

    In some cases, especially when you’re trying to quickly communicate data (headlines, weather, tweets, etc.), there’s really no question: an iPhone-optimized interface is best. (Compare the Weather Underground with its svelte iPhone version.)

    For a blog, I don’t think it’s that straightforward. Especially when your site’s design is a huge part of what makes it distinctive, you might be better off letting the iPhone do its best with the real thing. Of course, if your blog starts out unreadable (I’m looking at you, MySpace), it’s only going to get worse on the iPhone, but a decently-designed blog fares pretty well at QVGA, 160 ppi.

    As far as goes, Cutline feels pretty similar to the NYT web design, and Apple uses the Times as a marquee piece for Mobile Safari, so I think you’re pretty safe without a custom iPhone version.

    However, I think if you took that iPhone WordPress plugin and really made it your own, that might be the best of both worlds. (That’s what I tried to do with my friend’s sports blog; the iPhone version feels very similar, but without extraneous navigation and decoration. Streamlined, but visually of the same family.)

  2. says

    Definitely the one made for the iPhone, since I don’t have to turn my phone to read your entries. It reads natural (to me).

    There must be a way to tweak it to match your current blog-theme, no?

  3. says

    Dan, I completely agree. When it comes to readability, performance and recognizability, it’s in your best interest to ensure that your blog/website/content of any kind can be accessed on any browser, particularly one as popular as Safari for the iPhone.

    If it works without any special love, all the better. If not, do what it takes to make it work.

    As you and Eduardo both pointed out, the best solution would be to tweak the iPhone theme so that it closely matches my current theme. Perhaps I’ll take a crack at it some rainy, lonely day in the future. For now, I’m sticking with Cutline.

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