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Three Paradigm Shifts Required Before Wireless Catches On
By David Haskin
Managing Editor, allNetDevices

Content providers must blend into the woodwork.
Vincent Cerf, one of the inventors of the underpinnings of the Internet, recently told Time that the Internet will become so ubiquitous that it will disappear. Content vendors for wireless devices must fully understand what that means.

In simple terms, it means that Internet access will become so natural that people often won't even know they're using the Internet. It means that Net access will stop being an event that starts when you switch on your PC and load software and will become a virtually transparent process that appears whenever the user wants it.

In that environment, the AOLs and CNNs of the world, and smaller, lesser-known content vendors, must stop believing their brand will bring people to wireless. The type of information that works best on the wireless Web is small, highly targeted and hyper-personalized. Wireless devices are suitable for that type of information, but not for shrunken-down versions of the Web.
Device vendors must end their mini-PC mentality.
Wireless phone vendors -- including NeoPoint, which is the most innovative of the lot -- still treat the devices like teensy PCs. The teensier, the better. They need to change that thinking significantly.

One huge problem is input. After entering their first couple of URLs in a phone, most users I've talked with simply quit. Rah-rah industry people counter by saying that's why wireless portals will be so important -- it makes lots of content just a click away.
Operators must better understand how people use the Internet.
Wireless operators may know wireless telephony, but they've been clueless about the wireless Internet. This plays out in several ways.

Wireless operators persist in treating their wireless Internet access like a shrunken-down version of desktop Web access. Their insistent use of phrases like "the Internet in your pocket" is creating expectations among users that can never be met.

In fact, combined with lousy input, small screens and, for a while longer, slow access, wireless Net access is a lot closer to being "useless, frustrating and expensive technology in your pocket." Instead, Wireless operators must embrace the fact that wireless access is useful in ways that are quite different than desktop access.

Again, it is useful for receiving very targeted, specific bits of information. Until operators make a virtue of that in their marketing efforts, more speed will have only a minimal impact.

Thanks to mikegavone who posted this:

John M
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