10 Replies Latest reply on Aug 8, 2008 1:47 PM by PHRED-SE

    Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device

    PHRED-SE Level 1
      We have a CF8 based system that we want to be able to access from a BlackBerry and possible an IPhone rather than from a Windows PC w/IE or FireFox. Since we only have the idea at this point and not even a BlackBerry, I'm wondering how large a task it will be to convert everything over to be compatible with the BlackBerry. What I'm particularly worried about is the many JavaScript modules that are interspersed throughout the system. The JavaScript is all IE 6+ and FireFox compatible. I've even run through the system with Safari and didn't see any huge problems, but a BlackBerry is a very foreign animal to me.

      Thanks in advance for your help and suggestions.


      :-}
      Len
        • 1. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
          splitzer
          Len, this is not something coldfusion can do programmatically. If i'm not mistaken, currently you should be able to use iphone/blackberry to view your cf8 app. However, if you want to fully integerate for mobile devices, look into css media type handheld. You would have to use that for formatting.
          • 2. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
            PHRED-SE Level 1
            That looks like it might work. I can set my media type to HandHeld, create a modified set of CSS styles for HH and go from there. It will take some time, but shouldn't be as hard as starting over and building something new.

            Thanks for your suggestion.

            :-}
            Len
            • 3. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
              tclaremont Level 2
              Sometimes you can use IF/THEN logic to determine if it is a mobile device. If mobile, use MOBILE.CSS, else, use WEB.CSS.

              I have not played with it in forever, but are you going to make use of a MOBILE domain name? If so, you might use THAT as your indicator that you need to use MOBILE.CSS as opposed to WEB.CSS.
              • 4. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
                PHRED-SE Level 1
                I'm not part of the mobile world at the moment, so what would be the advantage of using a MOBILE domain name?
                • 5. Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
                  tclaremont Level 2
                  We looked at the options a few years ago and decided to go in another direction, so my memory might be old.

                  The actual domain is .MOBI It is intended for developers who want to develop applications for Mobile devices, and allow end users to ensure that they are viewing the mobile version, as opposed to the "desktop version" of a website.

                  The advantage, as best I can tell, would be one of perception on the part of the end user. As for real benefit, it is lost on me.

                  My thought process would be to attempt what I suggested above, and make use of different style sheets depending on the information you can retrieve. If you can't retrieve ANY information that leads you to believe that this is a mobile device, the, make an obvious link that ASKS the end user if they want to use the mobile version of your site.

                  Theory vs. Practice are often much different, though. The complexity of your site will likely dictate your path. If you ultimately determine that it is easier to develop a completely new site specifically for mobile users, you can auto forward mobile users to the MOBI domain, and therefore not have to "market" both your COM and your MOBI domain. If a mobile user happens upon your COM domain he will not be tunred off by the fact that it is not optimized for his three inch screen, since he will be auto forwarded to the MOBI site.
                  • 6. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
                    PHRED-SE Level 1
                    My current version grabs the browser type and version at the very beginning of the login process. It would seem to me that a BlackBerry may use a unique browser so maybe that would be the key to determining what type of system it is.

                    If you don't mind my asking, what did you do if you didn't go with a mobile device?
                    • 7. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
                      tclaremont Level 2
                      Be careful. There are a number of browsers that can be installed on Blackberry devices alone. Also, I doubt that you want to restrict your site to JUST Blackberry users... do you?

                      As for our mobile decision, it was a matter of not having the budget to deploy the mobile devices and train the end users. Now, a couple years later, the costs of rolling out mobile devices to our staff has probably gotten low enough to where we might want to revisit the idea though.
                      • 8. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
                        PHRED-SE Level 1
                        We don't use the systems we build ourselves. Our clients all use IE and I'm sure they would use BlackBerries for the same reason that they use IE -- they are the defacto standard. Since we will just be proposing this concept to others, it is possible they would have to buy something to use it. I saw what appeared to be a fully configured BB on the web for less than $40 so I guess the unit is not the most costly part any longer. But since I've never seen or touched touched a BB, what do I know.
                        • 9. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
                          tclaremont Level 2
                          I use the BB 8320. It includes a web browser, but you can download a number of other browsers, too. This was the reason for my caveat about assuming which browser the end user is using.

                          I would like to know which Blackberry you can get for fourty bucks, though. Certainly not one with the features of the 8320, I am sure. Unless you mean WITH a provider contract.

                          Since you are not familiar with the Blackberry.... I can set mine up to make use of my wireless network at home. Therefore if the device is within range of my network, it will use my network for browsing, as opposed to chewing up minutes on my wireless plan (not to mention the huge speed boost when using WiFi). With the upswing in the number of wireless networks out there, the Blackberry is starting to become attractive for surfing for some purposes. The reason this is relevent is because as the practicality and cost keep swinging in a more favorable direction, web developers are going to need to entertain the needs of mobile devices much more so than they do today, or risk alienating them.
                          • 10. Re: Using CF8 with a BlackBerry as display device
                            PHRED-SE Level 1
                            Here is the ad I found online. I have no idea where this ranks in the line of BB's.

                            $38.96 at 1 store

                            Talk about the ultimate in converged handhelds. The BlackBerry 7290 is the be-all and end-all e-mail solution. Wrapped in a quad-band world phone.

                            We're talking out of the box and ready to go. Stay connected domestically and internationally with robust e-mail functionality. Not just for Internet e-mail, but a secure, encrypted solution for your corporate e-mail - in real time.

                            Browse the Web the way it was meant to be with the 7290's large, bright color display screen. Instant Message with co-workers or clients using popular applications like AOL, Yahoo!, and ICQ.