Mowser purchased by dotMobi; is there a need for a .mobi domain?

Mowser purchased by dotMobi; is there a need for a .mobi domain?

Summary: A couple of weeks ago, Russell Beattie announced that Mowser was at the end of its life. His post took on a life of its own into a discussion of the mobile web and approaches to the internet on mobile devices. I heard today that Mowser will continue to live on as the service has been purchased by dotMobi. I'm glad that things worked out for Russell and wish him all the best in the future.

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TOPICS: Browser, Mobility
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Mowser purchased by dotMobi; is there a need for a .mobi domain?A couple of weeks ago, Russell Beattie announced that Mowser was at the end of its life. His post took on a life of its own into a discussion of the mobile web and approaches to the internet on mobile devices. I heard today that Mowser will continue to live on as the service has been purchased by dotMobi. You can check out the press release for details. I'm glad that things worked out for Russell and wish him all the best in the future.

Even though I browse all the time on my mobile devices, I have to admit I have never visited a site with the .mobi internet domain extension and am not sold on its usefulness. I understand that by visiting a site with a .mobi domain people are assured that the site will be optimized for their mobile device. However, most every site I visit as a mobile enthusiast already has a mobile-optimized version at their standard URL or maybe even at their m.xxx.com URL and there doesn't appear to be a real need for .mobi. With the iPhone's Safari browser, S60 browser, Opera Mini, and more web browsers out there handling standard websites that may not have optimized pages, I think the real innovation in the mobile space is the browser more than the website itself. I do prefer to visit sites that are optimized and tons of sites have even optimized for the iPhone to take advantage of the full power of the device's browser.

Do you visit .mobi sites? Is there a need for a mobile-specific domain such as .mobi?

Topics: Browser, Mobility

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11 comments
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  • .mobi is Useful

    I like developed .mobi sites, and have a blog and showcase of .mobi sites at http://mobienthusiast.mobi. It's true that there are many mobile optimized .com sites, but I like the simplicity of being able to type in whatever.mobi instead of guessing whether I need to type m.whatever.com, whatever.com/wap, whatever.com/mobile, mobile.whatever.com, wap.whatever.com, et cetera. It's like alphabet soup out there without it.
    mobiEnthusiast.mobi
  • Do I visit .mobi sites?

    Do I visit .mobi sites?

    Absolutely! Every day. Weather.mobi and ESPN.mobi each morning. Mobile banking anyone? Visit BofA.mobi. Need to find out the train schedule in SF? Visit BART.mobi and/or Amtrak.mobi. Need directions? Visit Pilot.mobi.Need a restaurant? Visit Zagat.mobi.

    If it ends in .mobi, I know it will work on my phone.
    sactown7
  • RE: Mowser purchased by dotMobi; is there a need for a .mobi domain?

    Do I visit .mobi sites?

    Absolutely! Every day. Weather.mobi and ESPN.mobi each morning. Mobile banking anyone? Visit BofA.mobi. Need to find out the train schedule in SF? Visit BART.mobi and/or Amtrak.mobi. Need directions? Visit Pilot.mobi.Need a restaurant? Visit Zagat.mobi.

    If it ends in .mobi, I know it will work on my phone.
    sactown7
  • RE: Mowser purchased by dotMobi; is there a need for a .mobi domain?

    Well, Matthew, to be "sold" on something, one needs to try it out first. Then, you can pass judgment.

    I, personally, love the idea of fast download times and no zooming / side scrolling. Not to mention the fear of the unknown (do they have an optimized site or not?)is gone with a simple dedicated extension.

    The only downside at this stage is there are many mobile websites that have not yet jumped on the mobi bandwagon. It's only the infancy of this TLD. DotMobi is in a difficult position. You need content to promote a new, dedicated extension. If they start promoting it before the content is there, the general public just might give up on it. Content takes time.

    The bottom line is, a dedicated TLD (.mobi) to mobile optimized websites makes sense. The future technology argument is for the birds. Will technology evolve the mobile web as we know it? Probably. It will be decades before the general population (Global) will have access to "smartphone" technology though. The masses with their simple phones with web access will be the determining factor. Not the tekkies with their over-priced toys. And DotMobi sites will be there for everyone.
    Idea Earth
    • Yes, I should try it out some more

      I didn't intend to pass judgment in my post, but was stating what my current practices are and asking whether or not people used .mobi domains. I also agree with another commenter that it is important to have the content available before actively promoting the initiative and maybe that is why we haven't heard more about .mobi.
      palmsolo (aka Matthew Miller)
  • Some standard seems to be needed

    The lack of a standard has limited the amount of websites that appear in a mobile specific search such as google news for mobile. The auto redirects and transcoders are far from perfect. I think about people with the regular phone as opposed to smartphones. It is still up in the air.
    DJ
    http://cpATL.mobi
    cpatl
  • About time you do then is'nt it?

    QUOTE"Even though I browse all the time on my mobile devices, I have to admit I have never visited a site with the .mobi internet domain extension and am not sold on its usefulness"QUOTE

    Maybe you should visit a few .Mobi sites first then before passing judgements dont you think?
    binaryman
  • Examples of live .mobi sites from companies you know

    "Is there a need for a mobile-specific domain such as .mobi?"

    Ask the companies below.

    -------------------------------------------
    Banking
    -------------------------------------------
    BofA.mobi (Bank of America)
    Deutsche-Bank.mobi
    Wachovia.mobi
    Barclays.mobi
    RBC.mobi (Royal Bank of Canada)

    -------------------------------------------
    Financial Services
    -------------------------------------------
    Fidelity.mobi
    Ing.mobi
    AXA.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Insurance
    -------------------------------------------
    StateFarm.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Automotive
    -------------------------------------------
    Ferrari.mobi
    BMW.mobi
    Mercedes-Benz.mobi
    Rolls-Royce.mobi
    VolvoCars.mobi
    FordCA.mobi (Ford Canada)
    JaguarXF.mobi
    Opel.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Travel
    -------------------------------------------
    Priceline.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Hotels
    -------------------------------------------
    Marriott.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Airlines
    -------------------------------------------
    Iberia.mobi
    SAS.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Transportation
    -------------------------------------------
    Amtrak.mobi
    AAA.mobi (American Automobile Association)
    Thalys.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Sports
    -------------------------------------------
    ESPN.mobi
    NBA.mobi
    WNBA.mobi
    UFC.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Magazines
    -------------------------------------------
    Time.mobi (Time Magazine)
    BusinessWeek.mobi
    CNNMoney.mobi
    Maxim.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Beverages
    -------------------------------------------
    Smirnoff.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    TV
    -------------------------------------------
    Fox.mobi
    NGC.mobi (National Geographic Channel)
    USAnetwork.mobi
    TBS.mobi (Turner Broadcasting Systems)

    -------------------------------------------
    Video Games
    -------------------------------------------
    Xbox.mobi
    IGN.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Internet
    -------------------------------------------
    MSN.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Domains
    -------------------------------------------
    Sedo.mobi / SedoPro.mobi
    GoDaddy.mobi / TDNAM.mobi
    Netsol.mobi (Network Solutions)

    -------------------------------------------
    Technology
    -------------------------------------------
    Cisco.mobi
    TexasInstruments.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    News
    -------------------------------------------
    FoxNews.mobi
    AlJazeera.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Newspapers
    -------------------------------------------
    TheSun.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Guides
    -------------------------------------------
    Zagat.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Mobile Operators
    -------------------------------------------
    T-Mobile.mobi
    Three.mobi
    Vodafone.mobi
    TIM.mobi
    Orange.mobi
    ChinaMobile.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Mobile Manufacturers
    -------------------------------------------
    Nokia.mobi
    SonyEricsson.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Telecommunications
    -------------------------------------------
    Ericsson.mobi
    SamsungMobile.mobi
    GSMWorld.mobi (GSMA)
    3Skype.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Weather
    -------------------------------------------
    Weather.mobi (The Weather Channel)

    Department Stores
    Nordstrom.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Clothing
    -------------------------------------------
    Polo.mobi
    BenettonPress.mobi (United Colors of Benetton)

    -------------------------------------------
    Pet Food
    -------------------------------------------
    Purina.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Oil
    -------------------------------------------
    Castrol.mobi

    -------------------------------------------
    Airports
    -------------------------------------------
    Schiphol.mobi (Amsterdam)

    -------------------------------------------
    NGO's
    -------------------------------------------
    WWF.mobi (World Wildlife Fund)

    -------------------------------------------
    Cities, States & Countries (Official Sites)
    -------------------------------------------
    Barcelona.mobi
    Frankfurt.mobi
    Dublin.mobi
    Helsinki.mobi
    InformNY.mobi (New York State Department of Transportation)


    Source: http://Mobility.mobi
    jwolcott
  • Is there a need for a .mobi domain?

    .mobi = 'mobile', imo. The mobile web will satisfy a different need to PC - fast, on-the-go, anytime,anywhere, info. Like the PC internet created different business models, mobile web will create different business models to PC internet - .mobi delivers. Fast, good, & easy. Every time. NEW businesses will use it with NEW business models. 5 years - and .mobi will be EVERYWHERE, imo (DomainTalker)
    DomainTalker
  • RE: Mowser purchased by dotMobi; is there a need for a .mobi domain?

    A MUST READ for you.
    Mobilenet Promises to Be the Next Big Medium

    By Al Ries

    Published: May 06, 2008
    We are on the verge of witnessing the birth of a new mass-communications medium. It's the second new mass medium to appear in the last two decades.

    http://adage.com/columns/article?article_id=126880

    Al Ries is the author or co-author of 11 books on marketing including his latest, "The Origin of Brands," which discusses how the Darwinian concept of "divergence" applies to the world of business. He and his daughter Laura Ries are partners in the marketing strategy firm Ries & Ries. Their website: www.ries.com.
    binaryman
  • RE: Mowser purchased by dotMobi; is there a need for a .mobi domain?

    I have said it before & I will say it again now... there is absolutely no "need" for s dotmobi domain name... but there is every reason for having one, there is every benefit in using one & the desirability from a branding / promotional perspective is 2nd to none...

    but is there a need? Maybe that's not the right question? (afterall, there is no "need" to have a dotcom is there? - it's not so much about "need" as it is "desire")
    Newdomainer