In Q3, IBM will be shipping their Portal 7 Mobile theme (insert applause). This powerful theme takes advantage of the almost-ubiquitous used mobile web-kit. This compliments IBM’s Mobile Portal Accelerator (MPA) which provides a much broader solution for multiple mobile device support. The Mobile Theme provides a lightweight toolkit for extending portals to Android, iPhone and Blackberry (web-kit enabled) phones.
When to use Mobile Theme vs MPA? It is pretty simple in my mind: when you have to support a very broad range of phones from your basic feature phone to the most complex web-kit smartphones and pads – MPA is your choice. The downfall of MPA is that you have very little customization/modification abilities. Otherwise, if your business drivers are to get acceptance with the iPhone/Android/Blackberry market (75-80% of all phones) the Mobile Theme is a pretty good choice. I should note that there are a few more options such as native app development and rich-web apps.
IBM has done a really nice job in designing this theme to allow full developer extensibility. The code is lightweight and is agnostic from a JS standpoint with no JQuery or DOJO dependencies – but allows developers to use dijits and other libraries on top of or in replacement their theme and framework. (see below)
The above can be as-is or extended to your hearts desire. At the end of the day, this theme can pretty much work from the install and as mentioned, completely blown up with Portlet Factory, JQuery, DOJO, PZN or virtual portals. But IBM did a great job listening to what their customers wanted and will be delivering on it very soon. Kudos!