This week’s AppleUsers Share is our first looking at a non-Australian Apple User Group – The Maui Apple User’s Society, who have an iPhone specific mini-website setup and it automatically kicks in when a user accesses their website from an iPhone or iPod touch.
The MAUS iPhone Mini-Site opens up to the ‘Meetings’ page, where it lists the Date; Time and Location of the next meeting. This is then followed by a description of the meeting topics. Both these sections have been formated in a nice, large font suitable for viewing clearly on an iPhone screen.
At the bottom of the screen is an large button entitled ‘Call MAUS For More Info’ and it utilizes the one of the smart features of the iPhone and actually calls the MAUS office.
Returning to the top of the screen, we find three big buttons; ‘Meetings’, which we have just covered and then ‘About’ and ‘Location’.
Clicking on ‘About’ takes use to a screen dedicated to providing a brief overview about MAUS and what they do. Again, it is all presented in a nice large font suitable for reading on the iPhone or iPod touch and you’ll also find a ‘Call MAUS For More Info’ button.
The ‘Location’ screen explains where MAUS’ meetings are located. Then, without any scrolling required, there is a large, easy to tap button, that simply says ‘See this Location in Maps’ and sure enough it launches the iPhone Maps application. You can then use all the features of Google Maps to find directions from your current location to the meeting venue.
If you don’t want to use the Maps app, simply scroll down the ‘Location’ page and you’ll find text directions on how to find the venue from popular regions in Maui.
At the bottom of the page is the now expected ‘Call MAUS For More Info’ button.
Overall the MAUS iPhone Mini-Site, is well designed specifically for reading and accessing from an Apple iPhone or iPod touch. Care has been taken to make buttons large enough to easily tap, without been over bearing; likewise the font selection and size has been carefully selected to make reading the text on the iPhone/touch screens gentle on the eye.
If you are using an iPhone or iPod touch simply go the the main MAUS website link, www.mauimac.org. If don’t have an iPhone, but still want to see what the site would look like use www.mauimac.org/iphone.
MAUS have obviously worked on the assumption that most people accessing their site via an iPhone are most likely wanting to get to their meetings, and thus have tailored the iPhone Mini-Site for that purpose.
However, the regular MAUS website has many other pages, including: Online forums; Webmail login; More details about who they are and what they do – both within the club and out amongst the wider Maui community. Alas the iPhone Mini-Site doesn’t allow access to any of this material – you need to jump on to a ‘regular’ computer instead.
Having a button to access the ‘regular’ site if you wanted to on your iPhone would be a nice addition to the Mini-Site.
It may take a little extra effort to create an iPhone Mini-site for your own group, but with the iPhone now dominating the Smart Phone market, and their owners automatically become ‘Apple Users’ so why not show them that your Apple User Group consider iPhone owners to be a notch above the rest and perhaps entice them to become members of your group.
Here are some articles and resources on how to make a website iPhone savvy;
- Is Your Website Apple iPhone Compatible?
- Is Your Website Apple iPhone-Ready? Are You Missing This Huge Emerging Online Market?
- How to Write Web Pages for the iPhone and Other Wireless Devices
- How do I detect an iPhone User coming to my site?
- Apple’s Safari Dev Center
- HOWTO: iPhone Webclip Icons
- WPtouch: WordPress on iPhone, iPod & Android
PS: Check out the AppleUsers.org website from your iPhone or iPod touch and even consider adding it to your iPhone’s Home Screen – even just to see how it works.
AppleUsers Share is a series of short articles that highlight a feature or service found on another website that Apple User Groups may wish to consider incorporating into their own sites. If you have a website feature or service that you think should be shared with Apple User Groups, then drop us a line.