Part 2 to M1 Mobile Sotong Surf

Published on April 13, 2008

My first initial post on this topic can be found here. This is part 2, a further analysis to M1 Mobile Sotong Surf. Quoting from M1 Press Release 7 April 2008, P. Subramaniam, M1’s Chief Marketing Officer said:

With the launch of Mobile Surf tomorrow, M1 customers can soon have easy access to Internet websites and enjoy true web browsing even on basic WAP-enabled handsets, including those without smartphone capabilities. It is the first such mobile solution to be introduced by a mobile operator here.”

Thanks, your launch timely matches my birthday! Yes you are the first, as a SINGAPORE TELCO. But Mowser and Google have long done this in less obtrusive ways, with a better mobile adaptation/transcoding system. I do not know what system you use, since your technical helpdesk either hides it from me, or they are really clueless.

“Web pages accessed via Mobile Surf will be automatically formatted to fit the screen of the customer’s mobile phone. This offers customers a more ‘mobile-friendly’ presentation of information and improves their overall mobile Internet surfing experience. Mobile Surf also supports flash animation and multilingual websites such as those in Chinese and Japanese.”

Ok. I am going to find a lower end phone that supports only WML/WAP and test what you claim. But opps.. not only is lower end phone hard to find, there would be no screenshot capturing application.. Hence, I am going to use my Nokia N80 to find out the impact on high range phones first. I believe you would do a better job on mid/high range phones, since smartphone market share is at least 90% in Singapore.

I visited sgforums and sggirls purely for testing. The left screenshots are the original, and the right are from MobileSurf:

“We are the first operator in Singapore to deploy this web-to-mobile content adaptation solution to help improve our customers’ mobile experience. Everyone can now enjoy true web surfing on their mobile devices. I believe this solution will make mobile surfing user friendly and delightful for our customers.”

Ok, it is good to have a belief.

“In addition to the navigation icons at the bottom of every page, familiar Internet browser features such as favorites, bookmarks and history have also been incorporated for easy navigation and access to information.”

Hey, why did you not mention the additional navigation at the TOP of every page?? It is idiotically irritating as it occupies about 25-50% of my tiny screen! IMO, it is so much more obvious.. but maybe not to non-consumer like you. Even most low end phones have bookmarks and history! I believe only 0.0-0.1% of Singapore mobile users need to thank you for this.

And more importantly, why are you tracking my surfing habits?? All URLs, day and time that I surfed are stored on the M1 system! Is this even mentioned in your Terms of Service? Now, it is no more a secret that I am calling and SMS-ing with Hoiio!

“Mobile Surf is available to all M1 customers free of subscription fees, and the usual data charges apply.”

Thanks for not charging us for your wonderful VAS. But can I not want your VAS? Can I even opt out as a consumer? Can I even opt out as a content provider? No!?

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