Mobile phones online considered harmful.

I’m no longer convinced that letting the mobile phone industry loose on the Internet (or the DNS) can be considered harmless: I’m seriously surprised how any industry can come up with Internet user interfaces as crappy as what is let loose on mobi…

I’m no longer convinced that letting the mobile phone industry loose on the Internet (or the DNS) can be considered harmless: I’m seriously surprised how any industry can come up with Internet user interfaces as crappy as what is let loose on mobile phone users here.I’ve been a happy user of Siemens mobile phones for several years now, and I’ve been using them to go online for quite some time: Connected to a laptop or a PDA through IRDA or a data cable, and connected to the Net through a data call to an analog modem or, more recently, GPRS. All that was configured rather easily, on PDAs and laptops.Until tonight, I never actually tried to use the built-in Internet stuff, and I guess I won’t try it again. To begin with, configuring WAP on a “blank” mobile phone (a C60 without infrared) isn’t precisely fun — too many parameters distributed over too many menus, with too long strings to enter over these keyboards. And the error diagnostics are vague to the extent of being useless.Once you have configured WAP, the real fun begins: Keying in URLs on a mobile phone’s keyboard. The slash was particularly interesting, 12-14 quick presses on the ‘0’ key, with visual feedback lagging considerably behind key presses, with a timeout that interferes as soon as key presses are slow enough for visual feedback to be current, and with a mobile phone that occasionally misses a key press.Needless to say, the server on which the desired ring tone resides was unreachable for the mobile (with unclear error diagnostics, and a connection through “real” Internet access working fine). Ultimately, a similar ringtone MIDI file was transmitted through infrared to a different mobile phone, and sent to the C60 by short message.