Browsing the Internet on mobile devices such as cell phones, PDAs, and PMPs is hotter than ever and often more frustrating than ever. Although devices like Nokia’s Internet Tablets and Apple’s iPhone/iTouch have greatly improved browsing on a small screen, there is still a long way to go with mobile web browsing. In our quest to be more connected, the mobile Internet still suffers to offer a 2.0 experience on many of our portable devices.
The mobile web offers portable, less powerful devices the ability to surf a stripped-down version of the Internet. The mobile web exists largely because many cell phones and PDAs have smaller screens, less power, and often less bandwidth. Many major Internet players such as Google, Yahoo, and FaceBook have invested in and offer mobile versions of their websites. The top-level domain .mobi exists to provide surfers a place to find pages created for mobile devices. All sites with the .mobi domain should be optimized for viewing on a mobile device.
Until our devices have enough battery life and horsepower to give us a full web experience, here is a list of resources for the dotMobi crowd.
- dotMobi site builder or mobiSiteGalore are free ways to create mobile webpages that are optimized for the .mobi domain. This will be a big help if you’ve ever struggled to have your site format correctly on a cell phone. As it says on their sites, there is no technical knowledge required, no software to download or install, and the site you create is guaranteed to work on any cell phone. They also offer 100s of additional features and the ability to host your mobile site any place you want. They provide a tutorial video and example sites for your viewing pleasure.
- ready.mobi is another free service from mTLD that checks any URL that you enter for .mobi compliance. The feedback given tells you on a scale of 1 to 5 how your page will perform on a mobile device. Additional feedback gives you an estimate of download time from 3G, Wi-Fi, and GPRS as well as an emulator that displays how your site would appear. You can also access the .mobi Emulator without running a check of your sites .mobi compliance. This allows you to see how your site will appear on many cell phones. There is also a developer page with a helpful guide and other additional resources.
- why.mobi has an excellent FAQ about .mobi. They answer questions like who started .mobi, when was it launched, and how to register a .mobi domain.
- The dotmobi blog is a good resource to learn more about .mobi and its backers. This blog features news, current issues, as well as featuring new .mobi sites.
- If you’re like me and struggle with viewing a stripped-down version of a web on a phone, Opera Mini will bring you a full web experience. Make sure you check out the features page to see what Opera Mini has to offer.
Sites with the .mobi domain continues to grow and become popular destinations for cell phones, PDAs, and PMPs around the globe. Companies are continuing to invest in the .mobi domain as more users become connected to the Internet through their mobile devices. According to DNJournal.com, Flowers.com sold for $200,000. That’s a big price for a such little website. A neat site, phonecount.com, has a counter that estimates how many phones are connected to the Internet. If the trend continues, cell phones and PDAs will be become even more popular ways to access the Internet.
What are your thoughts on the dotMobi trend?
Photo credit: LoopZilla