Are you building Joomla websites or getting a Joomla website built for you and are looking for Joomla mobile template options? With more smartphones being sold than PCs (source: http://tinyurl.com/7z39y5h) and all of the browsing data shifting rapidly to mobile and tablets/pads, develpers and website owners need to rapidly employ mobile template capabilities.
According to DudaMobile, in Fall 2011 only 1.25% of all websites were mobile friendly and more than 50% of all local search is mobile. That means two things:
Full disclosure, even this Joomla 1.5 website was not mobile friendly! We launched it in fall 2010 with our own custom Joomla template from PSD and other extensions. We are currently rebuilding our site in Joomla 2.5 using a custom template, our own custom free Joomla mobile template. But for this article, we decided to install an extension to test "add on mobile friendly" to our existing custom template.
The Joomla Extensions Directory has several extensions that you can install to add mobile friendly capability to your existing Joomla website. Pay attention to the version of Joomla that you have and the extension compatibility. For this website, we installed the free component and plugin from Mobile Joomla. This was the RC6 version of the extension. This solution is great for "bolting on" a mobile template.
Installation & Configuration
Installation and configuration is very simple. Just download the component from the JED and install using the extension installer. Mobile Joomla also has a plugin that removes advertising from the mobile template, so downlaod and install that if you desire. Once the install is complete, select Mobile Joomla > settings under the component menu.
You can configure specific phone types, homepage for each and module positions. There are a large number of configurable parameters for the component which is available for Joomla 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 and 2.5. To see it in action, go to s-go.net on your mobile device.
Each of these three Joomla template developers offer a slightly different way to enable and configure the mobile template function. They are all very simple and it is always a setting in the Template Manager for the primary template that you have assigned for the website. It automatically handles the mobile device detection, auto switching to the mobile template, and the content layout for the mobile devices. The images below show examples of the mobile template configuration in the Template Manager. They may offer iPhone, Android and other specific device templates and configuration. This is the easiest way to get a mobile friendly Joomla template.
Using s-go consulting's mobile template will definitely give a developer the most control over the mobile layout for their site. The template works by using some modern HTML5 which directs a mobile browser how to act and respond on the mobile device. This is important so that we don't end up with the mobile browser resizing the site, making the text difficult to read and difficult for users to use.
Installing the template solves the problem of getting a great mobile friendly output on your Joomla site, but you have to be able to automatically select this template when mobile device visits your site. There are a couple ways to do this. There's a handful of extensions on the Joomla extensions directory that will do this for you. At s-go, all of the Joomla sites that we build already have sh404sef installed which has great mobile detection and "template switching" feature. We wrote an extensive post on this and our free Joomla mobile template here - check it out for more info on how this works!