9.7 Viewing Oracle Portal Pages from a Mobile Device

This section describes step by step, how to access Oracle Portal from a mobile device:

9.7.1 Step 1 Acquire a mobile device

Although access to a portal from an actual mobile device is, in essence, identical to access from a mobile simulator (you just enter a URL into the device), the simulator option allows portal developers to see, more quickly, how Oracle Portal displays pages and portlets on mobile devices.

There are many reasons that the early phases of developing a mobile-enabled portal with Oracle Portal is best performed with the use of a mobile device simulator:

  • Lower access costs than full wireless access

  • More controlled access to the portal within company firewalls

  • Quicker response times over a local network

  • Less hardware to purchase and support.

Most major mobile device companies, keen to get developers writing mobile applications, offer free simulator software for their devices. For legal reasons this software should generally be downloaded from the suppliers' respective sites, for example, OpenWave.com, Nokia, Ericcson, Palm, and so on. Different suppliers require different levels of registration prior to downloading their simulator software.

Some simulators can be installed on a standard PC and operate over a local intranet. Some other simulators connect to a public server hosted by the supplier, which therefore requires public Internet access to your development portal. As mobile device companies regularly update their simulators in line with their available hardware, ensure that you check the latest simulator requirements for access to an intranet-only-accessible portal.

9.7.2 Step 2 Configure mobile access for Oracle Portal

In a default Oracle Portal installation, mobile access to the portal is enabled. To prevent users from accessing the portal from mobile devices, your portal administrator can disable this feature. To verify the mobile access policy in your portal and check that OracleAS Wireless is properly configured, see Enabling Mobile Access in the Oracle Fusion Middleware Administrator's Guide for Oracle Portal. You must be the portal administrator to do this.

Portal administrators can set other global options that impact mobile access throughout your portal.

  • Exclude the Login link displayed on mobile home pages.

  • Display page titles in navigation link text, instead of the text Home and Back.

  • Enhance page layouts for PDAs (Personal Digital Assistants) and set PDA display options such as fonts, colors and banner images.

  • Enable mobile portlet content logging.

  • Specify the OracleAS Wireless Portal Service URL.

9.7.3 Step 3 Make mobile content available on Oracle Portal pages

To test mobile access in your portal, start by creating a simple mobile page containing the mobile-enabled portlet MobileXML. When you create the mobile page, set the option Display Page To Public Users as described in Section 9.2, "Creating a Mobile Page".

The MobileXML Portlet is located in the Portlet Repository, under Portlet Builders, Additional Portlet Builders. If you are not sure how to add portlets to mobile pages, see Section 9.3, "Adding Content to a Mobile Page".

Edit the default content of the MobileXML portlet as follows:

  1. Click the Edit Defaults icon beside the portlet.

  2. Enter the following text as the actual content of the portlet, or enter your own OracleAS Wireless XML if you prefer.

            Mobile Portlet Content 
            This portlet uses a short sample of the markup 
            that can be used in a mobile portlet. 
            The markup can be used to describe: 
            Forms : &lt;SimpleForm> 
            Tables : &lt;SimpleTable> 
            Menus : &lt;SimpleMenu> 
            Links : &lt;SimpleHref> 
            Plus many more useful user interface items. 
            However, unlike HTML this mobile markup is 
            strict XML, so more care has to be taken 
            when using it. 
  3. Click OK to return to the page.

  4. Click View Page to preview the mobile page.

    This view provides a good indication of how the page will look when it is displayed on a mobile device.

9.7.4 Step 4 Configure a home page for mobile users

Although it is not mandatory, we recommend that you specify a home page to be displayed when you access Oracle Portal from a mobile device. The mobile home page is independent from the desktop home page. See Section 2.1.4, "Choosing Your Home Page".

The Mobile Home Page setting is also a convenient way to access new mobile pages during testing.

9.7.5 Step 5 Contact Oracle Portal from a mobile device

To contact Oracle Portal using a mobile device, use the same URL that you would use to access the portal from a desktop browser, that is, use the form:


Oracle Portal detects the non-html access and redirects the mobile device to the OracleAS Wireless Service URL (specified on the Mobile tab of the Global Settings page). See also Section 9.7.2, "Step 2 Configure mobile access for Oracle Portal".

Some mobile devices and simulators do not properly support redirection. In these cases the mobile device may display some form of error. To work around this problem enter the OracleAS Wireless Service URL (mentioned previously) directly into the mobile device.

The mobile home page is displayed in the mobile device; the page title is shown, together with links to the portlets on the page. In the sample page you created in Step 3, there will be just one portlet link displaying the portlet's Short Display Name. Click the portlet link to view the portlet content in the mobile device.

As stated earlier, accessing a portal from a real mobile device rather than a simulator is a matter of network configuration rather than Oracle Portal or OracleAS Wireless server configuration. If the network is correctly configured (generally involving access from the Internet to some machine on an intranet), these steps remain the same.