Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Finding what you want quickly!

If you are like most people, patience is not in great supply when you use the mobile web on the phone. NOW is the word that comes to mind and most of the time the user knows what they want because they have used an app or visited a site before. On most phones this leaves the user searching for an app logo or opening their browser to find a bookmark! Neither of these is particularly quick when you have more than 12 apps of 5 bookmarks not to mention that you also have to remember whether it is an app or a bookmark.

It seems like phone user interfaces are not designed to handle a lot of mobile web sites and applications individually or at the same time and are certainly not designed to quickly get you to what you want. So there is both a need and opportunity for innovation in a couple of areas:

  • A user interface that accommodates 50-100 apps and bookmarks and at the same time make them easy to find and use
  • A user interface that combines app icons and bookmarks eliminating the need for a separate browser app.
  • As we are all different, we also want a user interface that we can personalize and organize the way we want. My mobileWeb comes to mind!
There is obviously plenty of innovation around both phone user interfaces and app/browser interfaces. However, it tends to be focused on specific phones (do high end smart phones sound familiar) or specific apps (Layar anyone). If you use an older phone or want a better experience for all your apps, you are out of luck!

Well, not necessarily – there are companies bringing out enhanced user interface shells and application launchers that innovate in the areas described. To date many are focused of high end smart phones but there are one or two exceptions. More about these in a later blog!

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