Mobile web initiative

The World Wide Web Consortium’s Mobile Web Initiative (MWI) is a new endeavour to make Web access from a mobile device as simple, easy, and convenient as Web access from a desktop device.

Many of today’s mobile devices already feature Web browsers and the demand for mobile devices continues to grow. Despite these trends, browsing the Web from a mobile device – for example, to find product information, consult timetables, check email, transfer money – isn’t easy or convenient.

Users often find that their favourite Web sites are not accessible or not as easy to use on their mobile phone as on their desktop computer. Content providers have difficulties building Web sites that work well on all types and configurations of mobile phones offering Web access.

Mobile Web Initiative participants will initially focus on two areas to resolve these problems: 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. While, for its part, the Device Description Working Group will create a database of descriptions that can be used by content authors to adapt their content to a particular device.

W3C is already developing Web standards for mobile devices; related standards include XHTML, SVG Mobile Profiles, and the SMIL Basic Profile. The MWI work will complement these current efforts.

W3C Members France Telecom, HP, MobileAware, Segala M Test, Vodafone, and Volantis have stepped forward as Founding Sponsors of the Mobile Web Initiative.