Salaro is proud to announce thier first iPhone app which is also a first for the DotNetNuke platform as well as Catalook. This app and companion DNN Module is to make life easier for a busy shop owner on the move, running their online store using Catalook in DotNetNuke Portal. We believe this app will make the DNN portal administrator job easier when mobile.
At SalarO we have done a considerable amount of work in developing modules for DNN that can communicate with the growing number of smart phones coming to the market. Additional optimized small screen browser data is through the store activity checker module. This will make it easy to check the store purchases with a single click and administer other essential tasks while on the move. These are the tasks we attempted to address:
- A custom mobile DNN module to publish the portal activity & then it is placed on a typical portal page.
- An iPhone app that allows users to subscribe to the web service and displays the result.
- A further interaction with the portal is done through optimized skin for mobile devices and the Custom Mobile DNN Module.
Web Service Module and DotNetNuke & Store Activity Detail Module are developed for the DotNetNuke & Catalook Store Portal Activity application (Android version to follow this quarter) in the Apple iPhone store which is designed to allow an administrator of DotNetNuke/Catalook a quick method for checking the activities of their store and offer basic DotNetNuke users an online overview.
Once the application is opened, it is quick & easy to check to see if any significant activities have happened in recent days. If something important has happened, then with one click the shop owner can reach a page on their portal to do further checks and interact with their users if necessary using these DNN modules.
Please watch part one of the my video explanation of our app here on YouTube and watch it here on Motion Box.
Please note that, this module at 20 USD does require running alongside an iPhone application on Apple store and will not be useful if run on its own. This iPhone App is 5 USD and can only be purchased from App Store. Therefore, without both purchases, these modules have no value on their own.
Please see the video explaining the configuration and how to use the app on your iPhone and iPod Touch on You Tube or further down this page.
SalarO team has also released the first iPhone SkinPack that you could use to create a mini site or place number of pages in your site with this skin running. The result can be seen here. We intended to produce a skin that behaves well on iPhone only and we ended up producing one that behaves well on both the iPhone restricted window size and the normal browser windows.
Please checkout the skin at our demo site and if you dont have an iphone to checkout the width. Please have a look with the emulator here on testiphone.com/.
This skinpack comes with number of great containers to suit the skin, as well as, skin types for various situations requiring different ways of content placements in the page.
The skin and the module will be made available in our store as well as snow and dnn store in the new year.
SalarO's Mobile World of DNN Newsletter
iPhone & iPod Touch project is SalarO's first study of DotNetNuke usability within the enormously successful iPhone & iPod mobile devices arena. It is predicted that by end of this year, there will be approx 100 million devices around the world. The Apple OS is now well defined, so now is the time to create sections in your site that are user friendly in this environment.
If you don’t have an iPhone or iPod touch to test your site then please have a look at testiphone.com/. Keep in mind that - like all technology - the prices will come down eventually. It's a virtual certainly that within the next couple of years everyone will either have one or they'll be using similar copycat devices that are bound to join the competition in time. The touch sensitive interface is making developers think a bit differently about software development. The future is a place where mice and physical keyboards may become scarce.
What is so attractive about iPhone and iPod Touch
Both The iPhone and iPod Touch are expected to be connected to the web at all time, either with local WiFi hotspots or via G3 or Edge network on iPhone. The main incentives are the size, long battery life, stunning user interface. This means that developing for portable devices no longer has to mean building occasionally connected, miniature, underpowered user interfaces. Both devices are good at displaying standard web pages that you may never need to develop an application specifically for the iPhone. Your iPhone users can likely use your pre-existing DNN with few, if any, problems.
Most web pages display flawlessly by default on the iPhone/iPod. I have surfed countless DNN sites with few problems. Nevertheless, if you want to develop an application specifically for iPhone users, then it can certainly be done with a carefully crafted iPhone/iPod DNN SKIN.
What are the existing problems with DNN on iPhone?
We initially tried to use mobiNuke 2.00.02 – to make our DotNetNuke mobile friendly. However, we did not have much luck with the module being very buggy. We therefore went about solving the issues with slight modifications of the core and just a optimized skin. The rest of it will be achieved by mirroring modules or keeping it simple with dedicated copy borrowed from our main site.
Making DNN more usable for iPhone users is to understand that a standard sized button works fine for a mouse click, but the comparatively large size of a person's fingertip benefits from a larger target. Elements can be made more attractive and usable in other ways. For example, the iPhone will automatically convert hyperlinks that contain telephone numbers into hot spots that automatically dial that number when clicked. This assumes the iPhone recognizes the link as a phone number. To ensure the iPhone will recognize the link as a phone number, format it like this:
What's Supported by DNN? What's Not?
Browsing the DNN sites the iPhone/iPod Touch version of Safari does have a few limitations, However, these limitations are surprisingly few and far between when compared with the capabilities of other so-called ‘internet enabled' devices. Notable in the list are
- Adobe Flash. This is due to the fact that plug-ins and downloads of all kinds are prohibited on the iPhone/iPod.
- Silverlight as a development option.
The iPhone/iPod's ultra-rich, always connected browser environment is destined to redefine the way mobile device applications are built. A new wave of iPhone aware software is developing so I suggest you hop on and surf it to success!
Please see our series of videos on this subject here. And latest on on youtube here.