Blackberry & handhelds

I notice when I go to a site like, they have their full
format page come up when I log on via a computer. However, if I log on
via my blackberry, it;s dramatically stripped down.

I realise much of this is done by my blackberry - the disregarding of
graphics, not paying attention to tables, etc. But is there a way to
discern if someone is logging in via a handheld device as opposed to a
computer, and route to a more appropriate view? Thanks, Janna

One way is work exactly as usual but be careful that your css etc.
degrades gracefully.

Another involves creainge a fake format (eg :phone) and set the format
to that in a before filter if the user agent matches something
relevant or if the user has gone to a relevant subdomain (eg Along side your html.erb template you'd have a
phone.erb template with dumbed down content/presentation/etc. Rails
will pick that template automatically when appropriate and of course
you get to use respond_to (see
for an example of this).


A minor quibble: translating a data-rich application from a full-size
computer screen to be usable and useful on a tiny screen shouldn't
be thought of as "dumbing down" -- it's refactoring that application's
information architecture/presentation to better address the needs of
the mobile user.

Sometimes more easily accomplished than others. :slight_smile:


Yes and it appears Rails may be particularly good at doing exactly
the! Thank you both for your postings. -Janna