synchronisation or browsing? (Mobile 2.0 is not Mobile Web 2.0)

There was several interesting discussion, about what is equivalent of “Web2.0″. Some call it “Mobile Web2.0″. My perception is that it will be more “Mobile 2.0″, as the mobile does not imply the same approach as Web. Why? There are fundamental differences now between mobile and web (and mostly from a tech point of view approach):

  • User Interface on Mobile is Key: that’s one of the main difference between a PC and a mobile. On a PC, you have primary a keyboard, and a mouse. These are the two main input components, and a big screen to display user interface. On mobile, you have a very limited display, but much more input possibilities: audio, video, picture, movement, environment (Bluetooth), location, but very limited keyboard and mouse equivalent. So the best user experience will probably tightly link to the multimodal capacities of the phone.
  • Mobile is more about synchronisation than browsing. The trend now, on the web, is to provide you most of the user experience from a browser. This happens for two reasons: most of the people are now connected with high speed connection, and the emergence of high quality web browser. On mobile, we do not have these two components: connection is not always cheap, not always available, and not
    always fast. Browsers are very limited and not really full featured….

So what are the conclusions:

That Mobile2.0 will be in my view a smart mix between several components, able to

  • connect to a server to update local content, or to update server content from local data (synchronisation)
  • execute locally some complex task, mixing several inputs (local, web, etc…), and store this result locally (to be later synchronized)

From the end user perspective, this will be transparent (no need to care about installing an application). I think that technically speaking, it will be a combination of browsing based technology (typically XHTML) and some smart client like J2me, FlashLite, or just plain voice call or DTMF….

There won’t be any single technical answer to the frangmentation problem, as mobile is an innovative media, and then innovation generate fragmentation…

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6 thoughts on “synchronisation or browsing? (Mobile 2.0 is not Mobile Web 2.0)”

  1. Indeed, good analyis and the market out there for so called ODP (on device portal) is getting quite active with more than 10 identified players providing a client-server solution which allow to access/pre-view content off-line before buying (surfkitchen, action engine, openwave, nellymoser, uione are in the leader pack). As per the fragmentation, mostly OS fragmentation, only those who can address it and have java support will be able, imho, to survive. It i also interesting to see that some tackle the content provider market first, others the MO and some go straight to consumers.

  2. Thanks Hervé for the feedback, and for pointing out a new acronym (ODP). I agree with ou with the issue of managing cross platform, cross technology client will be one of the biggest challenge, especially considering the range of devices (from MIDP1.0 to smartphone) that some needs to address…

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