When I logged in to my Blogger dashboard this morning, I was greeted with a little pop-up notice saying that mobile templates were now available for Blogger users. Would I like to turn them on now?

As a fanatical regular iPhone web surfer, I do appreciate sites that are specifically formatted for mobile users. Mobile internet service has improved drastically in the past few years, and one no longer needs to walk away and make a sandwich while waiting for a site to download. However, some sites – my own, included – are still often painfully slow to load.

So, of course I clicked yes, that I would like to try out the new mobile template.

Here’s what Little Bytes of Life looked like on my iPhone before the mobile template was installed.

Pre-Mobile: Lots going on for such a small space.

After the mobile template was installed, the clutter went away, and the page loaded much more quickly. Posts are shown in “snippet” view, with one picture, as a teaser.

Post-Mobile: Less clutter, more focus on posts.

The author’s About Me photo and bio-blurb appears at the bottom of the page.

Hello from the bottom of the page!

Clicking on a post link shows this view:

A post, in mobile format.

You can’t see it from the picture, but if you scroll down, the entire post, including comments, will be revealed. The About Me section is again at the bottom of the page. There are also links to browse older and newer posts.

If, for some reason, one needs to return to the slower cluttered regular format, there’s a link to “view web version” at the bottom of each page.

To give the mobile template a try, go to your Blogger dashboard and click on Settings > Email & Mobile (formerly just Email). Click the radio button for “Yes, On mobile devices, show the mobile version of my template.” Don’t forget to click SAVE SETTINGS at the bottom of the page.

A few clicks, and your mobile template is installed!

See that QR code on the page above? I scanned it, and it goes right to Little Bytes of Life. I haven’t figured out yet why they put it there, unless they expect me to cut the graphic out an paste it on something. Anyone know why that’s there?

The mobile template is noted as being in “beta,” and I believe the may only be available for users of Blogger in Draft. If you don’t have Blogger in Draft set as your default dashboard, you should consider doing so. If I remember correctly how to do this, log into your dashboard at http://draft.blogger.com and select the option to make Blogger in Draft your default dashboard. All the cool, new stuff from Blogger is released in draft first, so don’t miss out!

For the record, I have tested lots of “mobile your blog” web sites, and have not been happy with ANY of the results. Blogger’s mobile template is by far the best – and easiest! – option I’ve tried for Blogger blogs. WordPress users have had a mobile plug-in for quite a while, so this offering from Blogger is long overdue, in my opinion.

More about Blogger’s mobile templates from the Blogger in Draft blog.

Give the mobile template a try and let me know what you think! Or, if you’ve found something better, please tell me about it!

Copyright © by Elizabeth O’Neal

Elizabeth is a professional genealogist and California native living in the Santa Barbara area. She has been researching her own family for almost three decades, and providing research services to others for about 8 years.

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