Locative Lab

researching locative media

"Mobile apps” nearly dead?

Before long, probably 3 years, we shall probably no longer talk of
mobile apps. All of us “mobile experts” may have to find something else
to do. There will be a shift towards iconic designs for larger format
devices with keyboards, which more and more consumers will demand – the
Motorola Q is already on that track, but the UI will also have finally
attracted the design attention it deserves. We will want to
carry these devices and they will become abundant – imagine the quality
of the Nintendo DS graphics on a handset! Network speed via HSDPA and
WiFi will dissolve many bandwidth-related issues (there are still many
of them) that plague mobile services today (both uplink and downlink).
Rich web technologies will be widely available, including Ajax, Flash
etc. Most devices will support one of a few fully-open (i.e. abundant
APIs) operating systems.

There will probably need to be some
“mobilisation” of apps to make them work well on mobile devices, such
as provision for offline data caching, transcoding of content, but
these won’t require specialised mobile technologies – these will be
done within the realm of web technologies and become natually part of
web frameworks and platforms.

Mobile will just be another
channel for an Internet service. Of course, this idea has been pursued
for many years. Remember the original whitepaper for HDML (WAP
precursor)? The whole model was “Internet on the mobile phone”. They
just fudged over the smallprint bit about “…with two buttons and a
only 40 words per page”. Thankfully, those days are rapidly moving on



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Cityscape LocativeLab.org is Ronald Lenz's research website on locative & mobile media. This is mostly an archive of blogposts I find inspiring and interesting and an overview of my work. I'm a strategist, technologist and researcher in the field of Location-Based Mobile Services and work at Waag Society, a medialab in Amsterdam, The Netherlands where I head the Locative Media research program and at 7scenes, a platform for GPS games and tours as creative director. Picture 4 Find me at Twitter, LinkedIn or via ronald [at] waag [dot] org.

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