8 Replies Latest reply on Jan 12, 2011 12:03 PM by watchingDclock

    Browser Shortfalls

    CaptainGuy

      Browser issues.

       

      In order for the NC to be a good tablet or whatever it is beyond a great eReader, the Browser needs a lot of attention.  

       

      I do web site development and database design.  I have 7 Browsers I test against.  FWIW Only Interent Explorer passes all my tests.  Google Chrome is much faster, but fails in many basic page elements.  Safari fails in a few, Firefox is closest to passing all my tests.  Opera does fairly well.  My Palm browser (a few years old) misses a lot, but considering its age is ok.  My Samsung Cell Phone browser does OK too. 


      There are many basic things I use in page design and NC Fails in all of them.
      1) Frames not supported.  The browser does recognize "Target=" and displays correctly, but the whole page scrolls as one

      2) Fixed background not supported.  This is an important design element as it allows stuff to float over a background image

      3) Simple javascript embeds not supported4) Sounds do not play.  Some sites have background music or tutorials (not flash)

      5) Videos do not play:  Many sites have web cams... like our county has a beach cam to check the surf.  It doesn't play (not flash) on the NC

      6) Animated GIFS

      7) Incorrect Browser ID  The browser tells servers that it is Netscape 5.0  So some things do not load correctly .  e.g. Google just changed the http://m.google.com to check for browser, and since it is presumed to be Netscape, it will not show the mobile page any longer

      8) Div Tags poorly supported.  These allow many design elements such as a scrolling text field on a page.


      A site I setup over the summer was

       

      http://www.volusiaresponders.com  

       

      Note the clock (java), calendar (java), missing background music, weather forecast, no beach cam, no waving flag, etc.  Note also the three frames (Table of contents, Header inage and body) all act as one.  Google Chrome misses the calandar and beach cam too.  

       

      It is great to be able to browse sites wile sitting on the swing, or to look up something on google while reading a book or newspaper.  The Brower is very important to the usefulness of the NC.

       

      Finally, I see a handheld device that can do it all.  Believe me, I've tried a bunch... Tandy 100-102, Apple Newton, HP95LX, etc.  I remember when a portable was over 25 lbs, or Apple sold a nice green bag for the Fat Mac and called it portable.  Barely fit in overhead.  While the iPad is just too big to be a handheld, the NC is perfect.

       

      Check out the page above with IE then NC and see for yourself.  I have many page elements which I'd be glad to share with whomever to help bulletproof the browser.

       

      Of course, there are many other issues like copy & paste text, form entries, handling of pop-up lists, etc. that are in need of attention.

       

       

        • Re: Browser Shortfalls
          Nallia

          The browser on the NOOKcolor is the stock Android browser that comes with Android phones.  B&N did not make it.  Hopefully they allow us to install different browsers when they open the spp store.

          • Re: Browser Shortfalls

            Have you tried other Android browsers? How do they fare?

             

            Of course, compatibility with all the possible elements on web sites is only one (albeit important) of several evaluation criteria that I would use in selecting a browser for my own use. I'd be lost without some of the add-ons to Firefox.

              • Re: Browser Shortfalls

                A new browser quirk that's shown up on my Nook in the past few days is that clicking on a link won't work half the time.  Sometimes when I click on a link, rather than going forward to the page the link leads to, the browser will actually go back to the page I was on before.  I thought at first that maybe my thumb had hovered too close to the Back button on the browser and accidentally triggered it, but it's happened too many times in too many circumstances for that to be the cause. 

                 

                Other times I'll click on a link and nothing will happen.  The link will get the green outline around it and then...nothing.  Okay, maybe I didn't press long enough, try it again one or more times and it eventually works.  OR I'll click a link and the little swirly will appear for a bit in the browser's address bar and then...nothing.  The next page won't load and I'll have to click the link again.

                 

                Also, zoom on my browser is shady.  Tapping twice never works.  And when I make the little "- / +" symbol appear on the screen, pressing on the "+" sign never works the first time.  Never.  It simply does nothing.  I have to make the symbol appear again and press the "+" sign again and then it will zoom in.  Only then will tapping twice on the screen successfully zoom in and out.  I have to have first zoomed in with the "+" sign.  But even then, after a while tapping twice will stop working again.  (Okay, so maybe I shouldn't have said tapping "never" works.)

              • Re: Browser Shortfalls
                phoneboy

                If you press n hold the link a menu pops up. hit open. Works everytime.

                  • Re: Browser Shortfalls
                    CaptainGuy

                    RE #7 above... I did some homework and you can set the response in the NC Browser options user agent.  Select mobile and all sites will respond as if you were a cell phone for factor.  Otherwise, the site will respond as if you were a desktop.  ASSUMING that the page as the options.  Very few sites do.  Of course, google, youtube, facebook, etc. do.

                      • Re: Browser Shortfalls

                         


                        CaptainGuy wrote:

                        RE #7 above... I did some homework and you can set the response in the NC Browser options user agent.  Select mobile and all sites will respond as if you were a cell phone for factor.  Otherwise, the site will respond as if you were a desktop.  ASSUMING that the page as the options.  Very few sites do.  Of course, google, youtube, facebook, etc. do.


                        • Where's that setting?  Clicked to "More Options", "Settings", and looked thru "Page content settings", Privacy settings", "Security settings", and "Advanced settings", but didn't immediately recognize something for user-agent....

                        -- thank you

                         

                    • Re: Browser Shortfalls

                      CaptainGuy wrote:

                      Browser issues.

                       

                      A site I setup over the summer was

                       

                      http://www.volusiaresponders.com  

                       

                      Note the clock (java), calendar (java), missing background music, weather forecast, no beach cam, no waving flag, etc.  Note also the three frames (Table of contents, Header inage and body) all act as one.  Google Chrome misses the calandar and beach cam too.  

                       

                       


                       

                      Granted that I'm no Web page designer, but your site is clearly using a mix of Flash and Windows Media Player objects, which obviously won't display/play without the appropriate browser plug-ins (assuming they exist for a particular browser). Specifically, the JS code associated with the clock and weather forecast is referencing swf files, while the beach cam is an mms stream (i.e.; proprietary Microsoft) and the background music is in wma format (again, proprietary Microsoft). Again, I'm no Web page designer, but I'd expect if you optimize your site for IE, there's no guarantee it'll play nice with other browsers. :smileyhappy:

                       

                      And as far as the animated GIFs, like Flash, it's supported in Android 2.2+. Google cited memory footprint reasons for the initial lack of animated GIFs (and SVG) support in the browser, but I guess with newer phones that's less of an issue. (For anyone who's rooted, both Firefox and Opera Mobile support animated GIFs and SVG, if you can't live without them.)