Tuesday, April 29th, 2008

Mobile Browser Concurrency Test: Get your mobile browsers ready

Category: Mobile

Jason Grigsby of Cloud Four has created a research project that needs our help.

He has created a mobile browser concurrency test to “query the number of concurrent connections your phone makes. Your phone’s browser will need to display images for the test to work.

We’ve also set up a SMS keyword to make it easier to get to the test url. You can simply text MOBILETEST to 41411 on your phone, and you will receive back instructions on how to test your phone.

With mobile devices, the speed of web pages is even more important given bandwidth, processor and memory constraints. Yet, for those trying to take advantage of the techniques promoted by Yahoo’s Best Practices for Speeding Up Your Web Site, it is nearly impossible to find how mobile browsers differ from desktop browsers.

Point your mobile browser at the page and run the test.

Mobile Browser Concurrency Test

When the results are in, they will be published under creative commons so we can all learn from then. It is interesting to see how the test itself works:

How Does the Test Work?

Designing the concurrency test was a difficult challenge. In order to have the test work for as many mobile browsers as possible, we needed to support XHTML-MP 1.0 (WAP 2.0). XHTML-MP does not support javascript which meant that all of the testing needed to occur on the server.

The basic test works by delivering a XHTML-MP page containing 64 images distributed equally across 4 domains. When the first image is requested by the browser, the server opens a connection and holds it open without delivering the image. It waits 15 seconds to see if any other image requests come in. As each image request comes in, the counter for the appropriate domain is incremented.

For those interested, we’ve provided a detailed description of our methodology.

If this works well, maybe we can move to other browser factors. With the huge number of devices, operating systems, and mobile browsers, it will be interesting to get data on the diversity.

Posted by Dion Almaer at 6:46 am
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