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IBM Connect: The Mobile Experience on Portal & WCM

John Boezeman and Tyler Tribe presented on Mobile in IBM’s Web Experience Platforms (e.g. WebSphere Portal, IBM WCM, and assorted other technologies like web analytics, forms, etc.)  it started out well but Tyler Tribe tended to drone a bit.  We all know what a site needs so get on with it. Fortunately, it got better when John Boezeman started the deeper technical discussion.

First the stats on mobile

  • 90% of people keep a mobile device within arms reach at all times
  • 52% of laptop owners also own a smartphone
  • 23% of laptop owners have a tablet
  • 31% have both smartphone and tablet
  • 10 billion connected devices by 2020
  • 80% of global population will have mobile device within 5 years
  • 311.5 million Americans with 425 million internet-connected devices

The result is that users will expect a ubiquitous experience. They want to have a great experience on any device in any location.

Goals:

  1. Reach customers and employees
  2. Control the cost of development while still supporting multiple channels
  3. Create, reuse, manage, and deliver content and applications
  4. Maximize response time to changing needs and markets

IBM’s Web Experience Platform provides content management, blogs, wikis, themes for branding, application frameworks, etc.  You can do pretty much anything you need to do on the platform, the question is how that translates to smartphone and tablets. Since it’s web, the approach is one of Responsive Design

Responsive Design: Create one experience that resizes and changes layout to match the screen size / device.  Same page but different display.

Technical

Have done optimization on server side to allow you to do device detection and deliver smaller packages based on that information.  This helps cut the deliver time for an optimized site.

Out of the box with IBM’s Mobile theme and with their Content Template Catalog v4:

  • Support for gestures.
  • Fully responsive design. They showed tab based navigation that became an option based set of buttons in a more vertical format
  • Showed a rotating banner that fits the screen size and works with the gestures mentioned above (swipe to see next banner for example)
  • Content fits the area
    • Note: This is a definite upgrade because if you use the CTC, you get a great starting point without having to start display development from scratch
    • Showed aggregated content from SharePoint and IBM Connections.
      • This was aggregated by pushing it into WCM
      • Showed an application portlet with a simple form to fill out
        • In the large form, it took up about 2/3 of the screen.
        • Mobile device had a view to fit the screen.
        • It was an IBM Worklight hybrid app that could be available on an app store or could be surfaced in the portal
        • Tablet views took into account a slightly large format so navigation was on the left rather than inline like a smartphone
          • Available via a combination of the Mobile Theme and the newest version of the CTC
          • Also showed an image driven site on the tablet with a two column vs three column display
            • Navigation here was a side flyout when you touched it
    • Showed www.jyskebank.dk which supported normal, tablet, and phone views
      • Tablet view even changed as you rotated the tablet
    • Cars.com is another example of multiple views
    • Cool example: Apply a CSS to make it emulate a book where a portal page equals a book page with gestures.
      • Took the developer four days to take an OOB portal theme and create a book thee.  (pretty cool actually)

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