Posts Tagged ‘smartphone’

Checking In To HTML5

June 22nd, 2011

Hey, you there on your iPad 2 with the nifty magnetic Smart Cover! Check out the Apollo 11 Lunar take off . Oh wait, you can’t because you don’t have Adobe Flash. Before you give up hope, double check in Apple App Store to be sure you can’t access it. This matter has led marketers to an ongoing parley of whether to create an app or a mobile web browser.

Mobile App vs. Mobile Web

As soon as your company is ready to go mobile you are faced with the question: To App or not to App? This is a question that has stumped marketers for some time now considering that mobile browsers are just as useful. What makes one better than the other? Mobile Apps are great for using offline, can be developed for each platform, and extremely effective for a large, dedicated user base. Whereas, web browsers are cross-platform, can be discovered through any search engine and are always up to date but cannot be used offline. This debate is ongoing and circular but if you add HTML5 into the mix it becomes apparent that web browsing is quickly becoming the way to go.

HTML5, what are you?

HTML5 is a coding language developed to structure pages on the World Wide Web. In simpler terms, it is the backbone of the Internet. While still in the developmental phase, so far, it combines visual, audio, canvas and interactive elements into one without the addition of processor intensive proprietary plugins, such as Adobe Flash, and APIs. In the mobile world, providers, such as Apple with iPad and iPhone, aim to create the best user experience with maximum battery life. In doing so, they dropped the plugins and are in search of the solution (i.e. HTML5).

Although an extremely complex and intricate code that you may not understand, chances are you have already been exposed to it. Safari, Google Chrome and Firefox 3.6 are supporting elements of HTML5. Or even in the smallest form like drag-and-drop in Gmail are created through the interactive element of HTML5. Want to dig a little deeper? Give it a try and join the HTML5 trial on YouTube.

Geolocation & Marketing Possibilities

In the past, Internet marketing has always been executed in the most primal fashion with basic banners and images with little video. As bandwidth and Internet usage is growing, the options are being more diverse with more extravagant videos, changing images and even utilizing IP address from desktops to market based on location or interests. But now, HTML5 is challenging marketers to ask, “What can’t we do?” with our Internet advertisements. For example, images can be moved around the screen in real time, videos can be sent in emails, interactive sketchpads and so much more. Thinking mobile? Considering that people aren’t carrying around their desktops with them, mobile compatibility is essential when developing new software and HTML5 is all over that. Determine location is possible as HTML5 (and JavaScript) will be able to access the positioning hardware in a mobile device from a browser. Thus, users will not have to go through the hassle of downloading the apps and companies will not have to pay to develop cross-platform apps to determine geolocation.

With so much of the location-based attention on GPS-enabled mobile applications, we should all pause for a moment to reflect upon the promise of HTML5 in this area.  Companies like Yellow Pages are already testing location-based ad delivery.  An example of this can be seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJLn6XX8oCI

As most devices with web capabilities are already compatible with HTML5, this transition is relatively simple. Which can already be seen with New York Times, CNN and CBC who have made their sites “iPad Ready” and have pledged to be using HTML5 for videos in place of Flash. Furthermore, the cost for development is minimal compared to creating an App for BlackBerry, iPhone and Android. The web browsers are easily discoverable and can be kept up to date so users are always using the latest version. HTML5 is even showing signs of allowing some offline usage! Now if you need to decide between the mobile App and mobile web, just think HTML5.

If you are a Flash game junkie, do not fret because Flash isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Most games are unable to be developed in HTML5, although Mozilla is sure trying through their multiple demos. So, next time you hear HTML5 being tossed around in a conversation they are not referring to someone’s BBM pin, they are discussing the future of the Internet. Don’t miss the bandwagon. Is your company “iPad Ready”?

The Age of Smartphone WiFi

July 13th, 2009

Starbucks is one of the first places people think of at the mention of the word WiFi. The classic combination of WiFi and coffee however, is no longer the only place to get wirelessly connected since WiFi hotspots are evolving rapidly. The driving force in WiFi is the trend in mobile device technology to include WiFi chipsets.

Last week Sprint Nextel announced that a new version of the Research In Motion BlackBerry Tour 9630 will be released next year to support WiFi, as Sprint expects consumers to keep craving mobile devices capable of accessing the Internet.  As major U.S. wireless carriers continue to roll out new smartphones, the lack of WiFi in many new smartphones has left both users and carriers frustrated.

“It is now a requirement for all our PDA equipment suppliers to include Wi-Fi,” Jeff Clemow, Sprint director of business product marketing, noted in an interview with Fierce Wireless.

A recent ABI Research reports suggests that 141 million WiFi enabled smartphones will be shipped in 2009.

Many Smartphone users connect to WiFi to download new emails instead of using the bandwidth from their data plans, the gen X and Y’s are using WiFi to update their Twitter and Facebook status.

Will the future of hotspots evolve or is it constricted to cafes, restaurants and hotels?  Providing WiFi adds value for customers of these traditional WiFi hotspot venues, choosing the restaurant for a business meeting or a hotel to stay in can be partially decided by the availability of WiFi Internet service. A Reuters poll found that “47 percent of travelers make sure a hotel caters to their technology needs before they book it.”

And the shift to WiFi-enabled smartphones is changing the way other venues consider WiFi as well.  Sports complexes, like Ivor Wynne stadium and shopping malls are expanding coverage to the entire building instead of just the food courts. The portability of devices with WiFi connectivity is increasing the demand for hotspots.

It seems people want to stay connected wherever they go.  So should they have to pay every time they enter a new hotspot? I personally think not – especially in North America.  Hotels have already ready begun to hide the fee in room charges and many airports in Canada and US now have free WiFi.

Consumers are demanding free WiFi in Canada and I for one look forward to seeing the carriers and other wireless ISPs respond to this need.