Wednesday, November 02, 2011

ASP.Net MVC4 BlackBerry Application

I tried MVC4 mobile templates for a blackberry application for my company, as a preview of the power of mobile apps, all our company employee have blackberry devices so, making use of some web Blackberry application essential.
First impression with the default template was it was very cool for if viewed on iPhone or android with large screen and high resolution colors with all the curves and style working, but for the blackberry it was not.

Plus the performance was horrible and very slow, different employees so different output (that was because the style sheet was still downloading).
With a very simple start up page containing only a small menu of 3 elements it took about 4-6 sec to load and that was not accepted. I was using the blackberry curve 9300.
So after some analysis, the Jquery and the style sheet are so big for these devices it was about 400K, so I started removing and cleaning, after stripping JQuery out and starting with a new style sheet from scratch, I got a good result with about 2Kb only, now my colleges accepted the performance that was less than a second for loading the pages, or at the max 2 sec for the pages that contain more data.
even if you say the first style is better on the device it was without the curves so a lot similar to the current one. you can check it here
Another problem raised to the surface and that was security, the application I was trying to expose this mobile new interface was on IIS with windows authentication that didn’t work with blackberry at all. So detecting the user and login him in the application was a new task, I didn’t like the idea of user name/pwd specific for the application or even to connect it with Active Directory. I needed something simpler and easy to use. The only Ideas I have are as follow:
·        Use simple user PIN code for each user
·        Use certificate on devices
·        Detect the IP, if its static identify user with it. (im working here ), and filtering by Browser Agent
or if there any other method !!
So until I manage the security part I think this project will be on the shelf for now. 
and i need to give this back to a graphic designer that will return the style to look good and to work good to. as below expected pages:-\