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4/2/2010
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White House Launches Mobile Site

The White House mobile site emphasizes functionality over flair, but the iPad-ready main White House site has plenty of both.

The White House launched a new site optimized for mobile devices Friday, and announced that its main site is ready to be used on Apple's new iPad.

In a blog post, deputy White House new media director Dave Cole noted that the White House's primary Website is currently being featured by Apple as an "iPad-ready Web site," thanks to its reliance on standards and use of HTML5 video tags, enabling iPad users to watch live and on-demand video.

Meanwhile, the White House mobile site emphasizes mobile functionality over flair. The site features articles from the White House blog, and has links to mobile versions of informational pages, press releases, a photo gallery, and a video archive. While most of the pages appear optimized for a mobile device, the video section doesn't: during a test of the site on Google's NexusOne smartphone, clicking on a 7-minute video led to the attempted download of an 84 Mbyte video.

"The Mobile.WhiteHouse.gov program is just the latest in our effort to make our content available on a broad number of platforms as technology changes how -- and where -- people get their information," deputy White House new media director Dave Cole wrote in a blog post. In his post, Cole said the White House would continue to assess the possibility of developing apps for other mobile platforms as well.

In January, the White House announced the availability of an iPhone app, the plainly named White House App for iPhones. The app, available for free on Apple's iTunes App Store, gives iPhone owners richer access to the much of the same content on the mobile site plus a live video streaming feature.

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