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Mobile web is rubbish, say students

Shock news from mobile web developer InfoGin on Thursday, which carried out a study and found two in three UK students thought that surfing the web on their mobile was such a rubbish experience they gave up trying.

It’s not that students are just idle layabouts either – 69 per cent of respondents said that if InfoGin’s technology was implemented by their operator, they would surf the web on their mobiles more often.

Moreover, a hefty 71 per cent also said they would be willing to pay extra to access a service that improved the mobile web experience.

According to the Higher Education Statistics Agency, there were around 2.5 million students in the UK in 2005 – so that means there’s a potential market of 1.7 million students who want to surf the mobile web, and around the same number that are willing to pay extra for it. Are you listening operators? Think of all those data charges.

InfoGin makes adaptation software that optimises traditional web sites for the device they are being viewed on.

The study was carried out over December to March and involved 1,000 students from five UK universities. Prior to the trial, only 18 per cent of users found mobile internet services to be satisfactory, InfoGin said.

While 83 per cent agreed that as the web offers more social networking and community activities, it is important to be able to access it on the move.

Naturally, study websites were rubbing shoulders with Facebook.com as the most important resources students needed to access on the move.

“Today mobile phone users are faced with a very poor experience when they surf the internet on their mobiles” said Eran Wyler, CEO of InfoGin. “Students are typically early adopters of services such as mobile internet, and the trial clearly demonstrates that operators should address such issues as download time, web page layout and rich web functionality on mobiles. Web surfing on mobile is definitely going to become.one of the main revenue generators for operators in years to come.”


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