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Accessing Mobile Sites

From: Scott Weiss <sweiss@usableproducts.com>
Date: Wed, 14 Sep 2005 16:37:15 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: www-mobile@w3.org

This thread is meant to be a discussion about accessing mobile web 
sites from phones.

Entering URLs into mobile phones is problematic at best. Even on 
phones with QWERTY keypads, most URLs are fiddly to enter. I'd like 
to recommend a standard for mobile site URL entry: start with a star 
('*') and the rest of the entry indicates a URL. That URL would be 
all digits, and could be a pseudonym for a text-based URL.

For example--and this is a desktop web example--'www.thetube.com' 
takes one to 'http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tube/'.

As a suggestion, "*8823", otherwise known as "*TUBE", could take one 
to the mobile version. The phone could translate "*8823" to 
"http://www.8823.mobi" or "http://www.tube.mobi". If not the ".mobi" 
domain, there could be a universal lookup (DNS?) that is overseen by 
the W3C to translate *number sites to full URLs.

What do others think of this idea?

Scott Weiss
Principal, Usable Products Company: usableproducts.com (212.929.8599)
Author, "Handheld Usability": handheldusability.com
Received on Wednesday, 14 September 2005 21:17:55 UTC

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