Mobile Web 2.0: Panel discussion on Platform Capability and Enablement
Paul Golding, Consultant
Dean Bubley, Disruptive Analysis
DB: I don't think Google Android will important. Symbian will remain valuable. Fragmentation is here to stay.
MM: On next-generation handsets the browser will be the overshadowing application.
DB: More people use the alarm clock than the browser.
MM: The alarm clock could be a widget :)
PG: Discovery is still a big problem on mobile devices.
DB: 28% of Apples cost of manufacturing the iPhone goes into the screen. So "bumping into content" becomes easier, when there's more screen real estate. One of the themes that came out of our earlier discussion: for services which are critical or valuable, a dedicated client is worthwhile - as with Youtube on the iPhone.
Bena: What about Mozilla on mobile?
MM: We started late last year, we're finalising and releasing later this month. We think there are things that can be improved on the UI, even over iPhone.
Q: What platforms?
MM: We can't do it on the iphone thanks to the license terms - you can't write any application which runs code. So we're targeting Windows mobile, Symbian S60. We already have offline capabilities. We have another project called Prism which does offline web-based applications.
DB: There'll be opportunities and problems in giving applications access to device capabilities.
Q: What about distribution? How can we develop for something which doesn't exist in the field? Will it be preinstalled onto phones in the future?
MM: Our first releases come out in partnership with (didn't hear). We're working with operators.
PG: Firefox on the desktop always asks to download new versions of itself...
MM: Yes, the mobile one will too. (This is a really good thing IMHO - faster software updates for mobile would be a very good thing indeed).
Q: Will you support all access points the phone offers? How do you intend to explain to users why they can't be recognised or authenticated when using certain access points.
MM: We don't do anything about this, all of this is platform-specific. We don't know whether they're using Bluetooth, wi-fi or GPRS.