The iPhone monoculture

Posted: February 21, 2012 Comments

The iPhone monoculture – QuirksBlog.

I’m still gathering my thoughts on this prefix situation as I hadn’t realized the powder keg this turned out to be.

I do see a lack of testing on various mobile devices and browsers, I’m doing it myself. A big reason for that, though, is that clients are specifically asking for iOS support due to budget restrictions. I understand it’s my responsibility (to an extent) to test in additional environments, but at a certain point for certain projects it comes down to paying bills.

The core issue here seems to be that browser makers are frustrated at the fact that developers are targeting WebKit via vendor prefixes and considering supporting -webkit in their rendering engine. I hadn’t heard that before, but it seems to be the case.

I’m torn about this because in theory, the vendor prefixed styles should degrade gracefully, right? You won’t get a transition, that’s fine, the site still works. Yes, it’s discouraging to hear that developers are stopping with -webkit instead of adding other prefixes (via preprocessor or otherwise) and that is on us.

I’m not sure what the solution is at this point, but I do think PPK is right: we’ve defined the problem incorrectly. People love a good pitchfork-backed conflict, and this seems to be one of those cases. I’m continuing to think about it, trying to remain objective, and pieces like this really help with that.

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