From WCAG 1.0 to MWBP: Making content that meets Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 also meet Mobile Web Best Practices

W3C Working Group Note 9 July 2009

Table of Contents


This page is part of a multi-page document. Please refer to the “How to Use This Document” section for more information.

For those familiar with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, this page describes what also needs to be done to meet Mobile Web Best Practices (MWBP). W3C WAI recommends using WCAG 2.0, instead of WCAG 1.0. If your site is required to meet WCAG 1.0, you can develop it to meet both WCAG 1.0 and WCAG 2.0.

Summary of work required to make content that meets WCAG 1.0 also meet MWBP

Compliance with WCAG 1.0 helps go some way towards achieving compliance with some of the MWBP. This section provides a summary of these BPs. There are two possible levels of effort required, labelled for simplicity with the keywords nothing, something and everything. To summarise, if your content already complies with WCAG 1.0, to achieve compliance with the MWBP, you need to do the following:

Nothing: If a provision is labelled “Nothing” then content that complies with WCAG 1.0 already complies with the provision and no further effort is necessary.The following list includes all of the provisions that are marked “Nothing”. Links in this section point to the relevant provisions.

Something: If a provision is labelled “Something” then more effort of some kind is necessary to comply with the provision. All of the provisions marked “Something” are included in the list below. Each item in the list is a link to an explanation of what is required, in the next section of this report. For each there is a list of the provisions that may provide some compliance or are in some way related. There is no direct correspondence between one provision and another. In some cases, it may be necessary to make an extra effort or to consider a more diverse range of user needs. In these cases, the word “possibly” is used. In other cases scope may be different, giving partial compliance. In these cases the word “partially” is used. BP links in this section point to the detail section below; checkpoint links links in this section point to the WCAG 1.0.

Everything: For all other BPs, WCAG 1.0 does not ensure compliance and it will be necessary to do the work involved. These BPs are not related to any WCAG 1.0 checkpoints.

Addressing Mobile Web Best Practices

This section lists each of the MWBPs that are related to WCAG 1.0 checkpoints, which are listed under “something” above. For each BP, the section title is that of the BP. This is followed by a list of the checkpoints that can help meet it.

[ACCESS_KEYS] Assign access keys to links in navigational menus and frequently accessed functionality

[BACKGROUND_IMAGE_READABILITY] When using background images make sure that content remains readable on the device

[COLOR_CONTRAST] Ensure that foreground and background color combinations provide sufficient contrast

[CONTROL_POSITION] Position labels so they lay out properly in relation to the form controls they refer to

[FONTS] Do not rely on support of font related styling

[NAVBAR] Provide only minimal navigation at the top of the page

[PAGE_SIZE_USABLE] Divide pages into usable but limited size portions

[PAGE_TITLE] Provide a short but descriptive page title

[TABLES_ALTERNATIVES] Where possible, use an alternative to tabular presentation

[TABLES_LAYOUT] Do not use tables for layout

Updated 27 June 2009.