Research from web-hosting company Hostway points to a sad but unsurprising trend among mobile users. Hostway reports that 73% of smartphone and PDA users with internet capable phones are not surfing the mobile web. The major reasons given? 38% attributed disinterest to slow-loading pages, 27% cited navigation problems and 25% complained of some websites being completely unavailable to mobiles.
“At the moment, most websites just aren’t flexible enough to be accessed on mobile phones,” said Neil Barton, a director at Hostway. “There’s nothing wrong with having a flash website with all the bells and whistles you can muster, but you’ve got to be aware that mobile users simply aren’t going to be able to access it.
BlackBerry Cool thinks three things need to happen before we see the mobile internet catch on:
— 3G needs to become widespread in North America.
— Companies need to start offering versions of their websites specifically designed around a mobile user’s unique needs.
— Handset screens need to get larger and (more importantly) wider to make web browsing easer.
Until these things happen, we’ll keep seeing reports similar to the one from Hostway.