Everybody gets the iPhone interface

I noticed two new web applications doing something interesting: serving their iPhone interface to everyone. Muxtape uses an iPhone-style interface for its playlists, which works great on an iPhone but for the fact that the MP3s don’t play (at least, for me — doesn’t the iPod app load MP3s from MobileSafari? I guess not). Instapaper takes this further, and makes a web interface that you wouldn’t know works great on an iPhone unless you happened to try it. (Their FAQ even addresses the question since it’s not that obvious.)

The result is that everyone who tries these apps gets a simple, clean UI. Talk about limitations producing great effects.

  • Thomas

    Muxtape’s MP3s don’t play because they actually use Flash to play them. No Flash on iphone, so no music on Muxtape. It’s a nice UI, but shouldn’t it be optimized for the browser, instead of a platform where it doesn’t even work?

  • I don’t think it is good to optimize for a platform like the iPhone. It’s better to work on standards and let the products accept them..

  • The iPhone has forced designers to streamline their user experience down to the core essentials of the activity. It’s similar to why IM, Google, Twitter and similar “one field” input scenarios have such high adoption uptake – dead simple promotes use.

    My industry, (DVD and Blu-Ray), which features interfaces driven by extreme input device constraints, (remote controls), could learn a lot from these precedents.

  • @Thomas muxtape serves mp3’s to iPhones instead of flash. It’s a very subtle difference, and it isn’t really noticeable to the user.

  • Once again causes real designers to shout out, “It is about making it simple and not about making it complex.” It is about being the Google search page and not the Yahoo search page. It is about being the iPhone interface and not the Texas Instruments interface.

  • @Marc I can’t get Muxtape to serve out mp3s either.

    @Thomas If you take the time and look at the code, the javascript does indicate that it SHOULD pass the mp3 from S3 rather than the flash player. So @Nathan is correct with his post.

    So there has to be some sort of bug with this code implementation. Hope they fix it, since I really like Muxtape.

  • Adrian

    Muxtape does work on the iphone. The songs play inside of mobile safari fine.