TryPhone or iPhoney = iPhone + Lost in Translation

The TryPhone site run by MobileComplete is very nice if you want to check out the menu structure and general user interface of most popular cell phones. It breaks down a bit on more complicated user interfaces with gestures, button double-clicks and shortcuts. It gives you the general idea, but the graphics are a little coarse and something is definitely Lost in Translation compared to an actual iPhone.

TryPhone image of iPhone

They do have some Captivate-esque animated demos, but they seem to be driving the TryPhone simulation rather than playing animated captures or video of the phone. Anyway, check out TryPhone if you’re looking at a new mobile for a Christmas gift. Just be aware that the iPhone emulation gives a weak impression of the experience.

Mac users- If you’re developing pages to be viewed on iPhone, check out iPhoney from MarketCircle. It is basically a shell around WebKit that acts like the iPhone browser, Mobile Safari. It isn’t exactly like iPhone (address bar can’t scroll, not multi-touch obviously, and adds scroll bars in many cases were iPhone wouldn’t). That said, it is a nice way to get a quick “iPhone Preview” of any site from your laptop or desktop computer. You can even rotate the phone to vertical or horizontal/landscape view.

iPhoney in horizontal/landscape view

Tip: I found that I get more “iPhone-like” results with iPhoney by using a custom user-agent. The one below matches exactly what a web server sees my iPhone user agent as, whereas the iPhoney returns a slightly different version. Just use the appropriate menu item to enter the text below as “Custom User Agent”.

Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/420.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.0 Mobile/3B48b Safari/419.3