Almost a month ago, Mowser founder Russell Beattie was lamenting his debts and telling folks his creation was disappearing. He also questioned the idea of the mobile Web overall. Fast forward a bit and Beattie is announcing the sale of Mowser to dotMobi.
It took a few weeks to work out the details, but pretty much on the day that I announced Mowser was shutting, the guys at dotMobi got in touch with us interested in the service. Today is the official announcement that they've acquired the site and technology, and will be adding to their growing number of services targeted at mobile publishers.
The argument up to now has been simply that there are roughly 3 billion phones out there, and that when these phones get on the Internet, their vast numbers will outweigh PCs and tilt the market towards mobile as the primary web device. The problem is that these billions of users *haven't* gotten on the Internet, and they won't until the experience is better and access to the web is barrier-free - and that means better devices and "full browsers". Let's face it, you really aren't going to spend any real time or effort browsing the web on your mobile phone unless you're using Opera Mini, or have a smart phone with a decent browser - as any other option is a waste of time, effort and money. Users recognize this, and have made it very clear they won't be using the "Mobile Web" as a substitute for better browsers, rather they'll just stay away completely.
Beattie notes that he didn't get rich by any stretch, but the rent is paid as are some debts.