Vision and ambition for the mobile web, Philipp Hoschka

WAP 1.0 was the result of the first W3C event: not massively successful (he says).
Today mobile services focus on messaging, ringtones, music, TV... not web access.
What's changed:
- diversity of handsets
- large installed base: 1.1b web-capable handsets worldwide: 63% of all handsets
- installed base growing!
- but disappointing usage: 50% of web-capable phones not set up to use web; 24% only used once for web access
Positive signs:
- Browsing is #1 data packet generating service, especially for 3G users (source: Nokia study, 2005)
Another change: web has become a mass medium.
Want to make mobile web as easy as desktop
MWI approach:
- Solve interop and usability issues for content providers and end users
- developer program: explaining how to use existing tech and improving implementations, not introducing new tech
Many sponsors

Mobile Web Best Practices Working Group
Audience: content providers/web developers
Making web content work on mobile: guidelines and pitfalls
Chair: Dan Applequist
Best practices: first draft
Studies tips and tricks (from W3C accessibility, iMode, Opera, Openwave, Nokia etc.)
Distilled these into a single document
Is a work in progress: feedback is sought!
- Best practices say you should identify the cost of following a link.

Device Description working group
Needed for content adaptation
Mission: how to improve quality and sharing of device info
Ongoing work:
- survey of existing technologies
- understand who does what and why
Potential future work: shared, open device description database
Sounds like they're planning to reinvent the wheel WURFL-wise

Future work for MWI
MobileOK validator
Device description database
Test suites
... all still under discussion

Mobile web feels like web 1995: Philipp draws analogies:
- too slow
- lack of interop
- child protection
- not accessible (handicapped etc)

But there are differences:
- mobile web has more users than web95
- lots of potential mobile content
- there is an industry around the mobile web, supporting it

"When will we party like it's 1999?"