Cross-device Opera Widgets challenge


Opera has launched another widget competition: The x-widget challenge. The goal is to make the best cross-device widget – this means the widget has to work on mobile phones running Opera Mobile 9.5, which supports widgets, and in Opera on your computer.

It’s going to be interesting to see what people will create. I myself am in the process of writing a widget for searching bus timetables in my home city, Oulu. I also have a couple other ideas.

There will also be some interesting challenges. Opera Mobile 9.5 supports much of what the desktop browser does, so it’s very powerful. The challenges will mainly be with making the user interface nice to use on a smaller screen.

A good example would be entering your birthday. Usually, you would want to have a single textbox to enter the value into. This is because it’s much easier to simply type the date on the keyboard than, say, choosing it from several select boxes. However, mobile devices don’t come with big keyboards, so in their cases, it might be better to use a couple of select boxes instead. Perhaps even better, since the widgets need to run on Opera only, you could use Web Forms 2.0 datetime-local input element, which will show a nice calendar view for selecting the date. Web Forms 2.0 is great, too bad no other browser supports it yet.

See you at the challenge!