Get A Better Desktop Experience By Tricking Websites Into AutomaticallyShowing You The Mobile View

by Jeffrey Stark

July 18th, 2015

While having access to an accessible desktop website is great, Often the standard views of websites are just too cluttered and full of a massive amount of information, links and buttons.  However, anyone who’s visited a website with their mobile phone may have noticed that websites auto detect that you are using a mobile phone and serve up a simpler, less cluttered and more efficient view of the website.  Many of us have wished there were an easy way to get that view when browsing sites with your desktop browser because sometimes you just want to get the job done.  Some sites allow you to manually force the mobile view; such as Facebook, which can be triggered by going to the mobile facebook page at http://m.facebook.com instead of the standard facebook page at http://facebook.com.  However, not every website allows this.

There is a way to automatically trigger the mobile site, by using an add-on to fool the site into thinking you are browsing the site with a mobile phone.

Below, I am going to be showing you how to do this with Internet Explorer using an add-on called UAPick; however, this can be done in Firefox using UA Switcher (or another add-on) and other browsers have similar add-ons.

First, Download and install UAPick

After installation, go to the entry it has added on your tools menu in Internet Explorer called “Set UA String”.  Go there and it will pop up a screen to set the UA string.  The “template” combo box allows you to pick a template to use, select “Windows Phone 7”, hit tab and make sure you do not check the box labelled “Reuse this UA string for new windows” and tab to save.  At this point your current window will be set to seem like it’s Windows Phone 7 to the websites you visit.  You can test this out by going to the standard facebook page at http://facebook.com where you will be shown the mobile view for Facebook.

Also, any other site you visit while this tab is open will also trigger the mobile view.  As soon as you close the tab, the next time you open a page in Internet Explorer, you are back to the regular view until you follow the above procedure again.

 

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