Onswipe partners with Automattic for viewing WordPress.com on iPad

15 Comments

Onswipe partners with WordPress.com

Onswipe and Automattic announced today that they are partnering together to provide all WordPress.com blogs with an iPad optimized viewing experience. Onswipe started as a plugin for WordPress, called PadPressed, and has since received $1 million in funding, and expanded their user base to other platforms. A parternership with Automattic could certainly help establish them as the defacto standard for viewing WordPress sites on the iPad.

There is already a plugin for .org users too. OnSwipe essentially gives your site the ability to do all kinds of tablet-like things, such as swipe, rotation, and other touch features. Users that enable OnSwipe will have a submenu under the appearance tab, called “iPad”. From there, you can enable the following features, according to the WordPress.com blog:

  • Have the theme use an image from your recent posts as a cover.
  • Upload a logo to showcase your brand or personality on the cover.
  • Upload an image to be used as a loading graphic when visitors add your site to their home screen.
  • Switch fonts.
  • Choose from 9 different skin colors, to best match the feel of your site.
  • Enable or disable the whole thing.

Nick Momrik also noted in the post that WordPress.com currently has over 750,000 pageviews a day from iPad devices. According to Onswipe, they plan to make the plugin compatible to other tablet devices as well. They are also working on some “secret sauce [...] for social interactions across all Onswipe powered sites.”

We recently saw the addition of “Mobile” in the extend menu on WordPress.org. We’ve also seen a level of anonymity like never before between .com and .org with the release of JetPack. This appears to be yet another step forward to achieving both of those goals.

So what do you think? Is this pretty exciting to you? How much time do you spend browsing on the iPad or other tablet device?

15 thoughts on “Onswipe partners with Automattic for viewing WordPress.com on iPad

  1. I think OnSwipe is cool but it isn’t for me.

    The iPad is fully capable of displaying REAL web sites. It doesn’t need a special mobile version. Sure there are instances where swiping would be nice, but ultimately I want the full web experience (minus Flash of course) when browsing on my iPad.

    I absolutely hate when I browser on my iPad and a site delivers me a mobile or non-standard site. Typically I quit browsing that site and go elsewhere.

    Some users love it, I am not in that camp.

  2. I think its important to have a tablet presence these days with the devices becoming so popular, but its a difficult line to tread considering the differences between an actual computer, who still uses that :), smartphones and tablet devices

  3. I think it could be cool. I installed it just now, but their service seems to be unavailable, making my site inaccessible both from an iPad and from a regular browser. Hopefully they’ll be able to get over the initial rush of traffic, as well as configure things so that the service being down doesn’t take down a site completely.

    • Yes, they’ve just expanded beyond the plugin as well. Now they’re offering their service on multiple platforms. As far as I know, you should be okay with what you’ve got.

  4. I wholeheartedly agree. I bought my iPad so I could browse websites in all their glory just like I do on my desktop or my laptop. Now I’m being served some watered-down, highly un-intuitive interface for what reason? Just because I’m using a device capable of touch screen input?

    The full featured capabilities of the browser(s) on iPad should encourage websites to serve One Version to Rule Them All, not different versions for each device that comes along.

    This is disappointing.

    • I both agree and disagree. Like it or not, the touch input does change the way a website interacts with the user, and I see nothing wrong with modifying output of the site depending on the capabilities of the browser in question.

      I do agree that when possible, this be done via CSS or JS instead of serving an entirely different theme. It’s easy to make special CSS for smaller devices like the iPhone screen and such.

      However, the touch/swipe capabilities aren’t as easy to that with. The site itself does need some reformatting in order for those sorts of things to really make sense in context.

  5. It seems like it would be better for more photo oriented type sites. Matt on Not-WordPress is a perfect example. I’m not sure it fits well on more text oriented sites.

    For giggles, I’ve temporarily enabled it on ottopress.com, along with the WPTouch theme for mobile browsers. And all this is working with WP Super-Cache as well. That took some doing, let me tell you. :)

    If you’re using Safari and you enable the developer mode, then you can choose a user agent string to see which version of the site you want to see. The swipe functionality even works. Useful for debugging, sort of thing.

  6. How can I remove this from my iPad? It is completely useless and just locks up sites that previously had no problems with.

  7. My husband has an iPad and just asked me to explain why he was getting this display, which he hates. I looked it up—hadn’t heard of it before—and was surprised to find that evidently the individual iPad user cannot enable/disable this option. Instead, it depends on the owner of a blog, so since my husband dislikes it I will disable it, for all.

    I urge the 2 companies involved to work on a control option for the iPad user, as well as for the blog owner. I really don’t care but the person viewing it does, that person should be making the choice.

  8. OnSwipe is really annoying. Is there any way to completely disable it for every website I might visit? Sometimes the “View Standard Site” link doesn’t work and even when it does I have to scroll to the bottom of the page to find it then hope it works, then wait for the reload. Since almost every site you can visit (except Flash driven sites) looks just fine on the iPad, it would be helpful to be able to disable OnSwipe permanently across all sites.

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