The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has launched the Mobile Web Initiative (MWI), with the aim of making web access from a mobile device as easy as web access from a desktop device.
"Mobile access to the web has been a second class experience for far too long," said Tim Berners-Lee, W3C director. "MWI recognises the mobile device as a first class participant, and will produce materials to help developers make the mobile web experience worthwhile.”
The W3C said mobile users often find that their favourite websites are not accessible or not as easy to use on their mobile phone as on their desktop.
Also, content providers have difficulties building websites that work well on all types and configurations of mobile phones that offer Web access.
Mobile Web Initiative participants will initially focus on best practices and mobile device descriptions.
The Mobile Web Best Practices Working Group will develop authoring guidelines, checklists and best practices to help content providers to develop web content that works well on mobile devices.
The Device Description Working Group will address the development of improved device description solutions, namely a database of descriptions that can be used by content authors to adapt their content to a particular device.
W3C members France Telecom, HP, MobileAware, Segala M Test, Vodafone, and Volantis have become the first founding sponsors of the MWI.
All W3C members are eligible to become MWI founding sponsors until 1 July. Founding sponsors will take a lead role in the MWI’s work.