The New BBC Mobile Site Revamp Looks Good But is Very Beta

By Sam Gibbs on at

The BBC is reshaping its mobile site, updating it for the latest generation of smartphones, shoving in some features like automatic location awareness that weren’t possible with the old design. It’s launched the revamp in beta to grab your feedback, but right now, like and good beta should be, it’s just a tad broken in some places.

I quite like the design aesthetic Auntie’s taking with the new site. It caters well for both portrait and landscape devices, changing automatically from two to three columns to take advantage of the extra width – a great improvement. You can also get easier access to customisation options; something I never really explored with the old site. Grabbing weather and other at-a-glance information is a lot faster now too, thanks to location awareness and new widgetty-type things at the top of the page.

The new site design also rolls in more content from the desktop BBC site, with food, sport, news, entertainment, iPlayer and more all rolled into one. The site also feels quicker, where it works at least, so its not design over function, thankfully.

Right now though, some links take you to the full beastly BBC desktop site – not even the old mobile site. It’s not really a big deal unless you’re trying to pull it down over crawling GPRS or something; it’s beta in the proper sense of the word, then, not what Google’s forever-in-beta products have lead you to believe.

Overall it’s pretty neat, and you can give it a whirl right now by hitting BBC Mobile Beta on your iPhone or Android device, or scanning the fancy BBC QR code below. I reckon the Beeb's mobile site is the second most visited page on my iPhone, so I’m quite excited to see what the BBC’s doing -- especially ahead of the Olympics; I think we're all going to be spending a fair bit of time hammering it for the latest results. Let us know what you like and what you don’t in the comments. [BBC]