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This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Browser Type and Version

In Japan, at the time this book was written, most DoCoMo handsets included the ACCESS Compact NetFront microbrowser. The markup language that was originally used for i-mode development was i-mode-compatible HTML, and was limited to GIF images.

However, as i-mode-like services become available around the world, it is likely that a variety of microbrowsers will be installed for use on Internet-enabled handsets. Remember that mobile users do not have the option to download and install a different browser on their handset. So as a developer, you should be familiar with the different browsers on the market, and tailor your content accordingly because for your mobile users you can't simply put a link on your site to "download the Compact NetFront Plus browser" or say, "this site best viewed in Openwave Universal Edition."

Here are some considerations about browsers and supported formats:

  • Microbrowser vendors There are a number of leading vendors and versions of microbrowsers that you are likely to find installed on i-mode handsets. You should keep up-to-date with the latest versions, and install the SDK and emulators when these are available.

  • Markup languages i-mode sites can be build in any number of markup languages, such as cHTML, XHTML Basic, and i-mode compatible HTML.

  • Graphic file formats GIF (GIF87a and GIF89) images were the only format originally available in i-mode, but you should expect support for JPEG and PNG images as i-mode matures.

  • Ringtone formats

  • The DoCoMo i-mode ringtone format is iMelody (.mld), but it is likely that other formats such as MIDI (.mid), Audio MP4, Polyphonic MIDI (.pol), and Synthetic music Mobile Application Format (.smf) will be supported by various i-mode providers.

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