Mobile Internet: World’s Next Big Challenge to Scale

Mobile and application services are the future of the internet. They will run on smart devices such as Mobile Internet Devices (MID) and smart phones. They will leverage an intelligent network, deploying solutions over an open and common platform.

The mobile internet represents access to an abundance of contextually relevant information from a number of devices across a variety of networks. It incorporates data-optimized wireless networks and leverages the web as an execution platform. Content itself will originate from the web and other service providers, from personal collections and from sensory data. The presentation of this content will adapt to accommodate multi-modal, multi-device interactions enabled by edge gateways.

The success of these services and applications relies on several factors. First, we must build an end-to-end ecosystem of components. We’ll need a platform that enables control points and helps the user become loyal the service rather than the device.

We need a platform – an ecosystem – that enables a unique, in-house and 3 party application development environment.

One great example is Apple’s iTune store, whichprovides an aggregation point for many different types of content. The iPhone extended this model brilliantly; other examples include Google Eco System and messaging service platform and Yahoo mobile services, which is becoming much more personalized than ever.

Web technologies have emerged to supply mobile internet services, utilizing modern web-based software technologies and web 2.0 community generated applications. To encourage the birth of these services, we need to have a set of function-rich application enablers and common application service architecture across all devices and services.

Common Thoughts & Key Points of Mobile Internet & Application & Services Solutions:

There is a vast array of real-time information and web-processed data on the internet. Service providers can become the gatekeepers of enormous amounts of data that pass through their infrastructure. As we have witnessed over the past decade, those who control data and learn how to monetize it are the big winners in this industry.
Service providers can monetize beyond devices by offering services that support them – applications on the devices themselves.
The mobile internet will center around information, gathering data from a multitude of sources — not just the traditional web. As the number of mobile devices continues to explode, it will soon overtake PC usage by behaving as an extension of PCs, using the same databases and links. Smart phones will become a gateway device to the internet, offering a unified access/control of the home PC.
The resulting large amounts of data and meta-data will create an opportunity: how to index and classify and convert this data into information relevant to the user. Personalization is key to generating huge amounts of revenue for service providers.
Two elements are necessary to make a mobile internet viable: a framework that customizes each consumer’s choices, while keeping the media-rich experience of the standard web in the background. Providers must move toward services that are carrier-independent, enabling a diversity of functions on a common operator-enabled platform.
Special emphasis should be placed on creating, using and securely managing personal profiles so that they are not a burden to the user.
Converged services such as voice, media, messaging, RSF feeds, search and location will function across devices and networks. All devices will work together and access a common set of capabilities.
Multi-modal and multi-device user interfaces will make it easy to access existing features and any future improvements.
Automatic discovery will link nearby devices, making the capabilities of public devices and the devices of friends and colleagues available to the user.
Multiple personae and profiles will help the user manage – and separate – family, work and personal functions.
Expect user devices to become more open; the main design challenge is to find a balance between platform openness and the usability of the service.
Intelligence will reside on the edge: Service providers will offer applications that the user runs on their device on the edge. The device becomes the edge of the network.
Every person or object, whether physical or virtual, will eventually have a dynamic presence in cyberspace through a cyber-identity or profile. This presence will dynamically mimic the characteristics and behavior of that person (or object) and its relationships and interactions with others.
The mobile internet will mimic, preserve and exploit social networks to offer users a personal dependable directory and information retrieval services.
Its networking paradigm will comprise a loose union of autonomous subnets, most likely hybrid overlay IP networks, belonging to a number of independent network operators, WiFi and service providers. It will support an ever-increasing set of mobile and fixed user devices, through a transport infrastructure consisting of a number of heterogeneous wireless and wired technologies.
Mobile internet normally refers to the ability to access WWW resources from portable/mobile devices such as cell phones and wireless PDAs and MIDs.
A high-performance network and flexible service delivery infrastructure are critical to making the mobile internet vision a reality.
Imagine hardware and software solutions that are adaptive, aware of their context and easily customized. These solutions are necessary to enable mass-market scale mobile internet services and applications.
A successful wireless internet will depend on consumer trust more than the wired internet ever did.
Business models supporting relevant access to information at a fair price will appear.
Replicating the PC experience on mobile phone is a fine idea, but mobile internet is about more than that. A successful mobile internet will apply the rich application/service platform and dynamic content infrastructure of the Web in a way that leverages the benefits of mobility while mitigating its liabilities.
We must focus on supporting developers, but also on adopting the emerging technologies of the web so that solutions can be rapidly applied to the mobile internet.
Dr. Hossein Eslambolchi