Top Irish sites fail mobile-ready test


28 Mar 2007

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Popular Irish websites including Ireland.com, RTE.ie and Boards.ie score one of out five on DotMobi’s mobile-ready test page in comparison with Google.ie scoring full marks.

A score of one out of five indicates “that it will display poorly on a mobile phone”, according to the site’s evaluation tool.

The Irish-based DotMobi, owner of the first and only internet address designed specifically for the mobile phone, yesterday announced its evaluation of the top 100 internet sites for mobile readiness.

Simulating a mobile device, DotMobi’s evaluation tool accesses an internet site and ranks it ranging from one (least ready) to five (most ready).

DotMobi listed Yahoo.com, Google.com, Ask.com, Facebook.com and Flickr.com among the top 10 mobile-ready sites. However, only three of these sites -Yahoo!, Google and Facebook – scored over three out of five on the test.

Earlier this month 845 Irish websites were tested, interestingly enough based on The Irish Times‘ list of the top 1,000 Irish companies in 2006, and only 6pc were found to provide a successful mobile experience for a user.

“Clearly, the majority of Irish sites scored poorly and there is room for improvement,” said DotMobi CEO, Neil Edwards.

The DotMobi evaluation tool tests a site for download times and estimated page cost. The test parameters are based on guidelines established by the Mobile Web Initiative faction of WC3, the international organisation that provides web standards and guidelines.

The average Irish score was 1.5 compared with 3.6 worldwide and the average estimated time taken to download a company’s mobile page over GPRS was 15.9 seconds with an average estimated cost of €0.60.

The report indicates that many popular, high-traffic websites are simply not mobile phone friendly. With more than four phones for every PC sold, according to DotMobi, an increasing number of users are accessing the internet via their mobile phone.

“The results indicate that consumers will most likely not have a good experience when they want to view their favourite sites from a mobile phone,” said Edwards.

He added that: “The .mobi domain provides a viable, easy-to-manage platform for even the most popular sites to optimise their content for mobile phones.”

By Marie Boran

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