W3C: Building the Mobile Web

Mobile Web technologies are currently one of the most active areas within the W3C, and for good reasons. The mobile web enables new business opportunities for handset manufacturers and is predicted to significantly increase the average revenue per user (ARPU) for mobile operators.

Starting with a workshop in 1998, the W3C has developed mobile technologies. Examples include core MMS technologies such as SMIL and SVG as well as XHTML Basic and CC/PP. W3C continues to address many challenges of the Mobile Web, including two with significant present and future impact: multimodal access and single authoring.

All the W3C Mobile Web Technologies are developed in a vendor-neutral way with the goal of being implementable on a royalty-free basis. The W3C Process contains strict interoperability and conformance criteria, ensuring the standards are usable across multiple platforms and devices.

Multimodal Interaction

W3C Multimodal Interaction standards will enable a new class of exciting mobile applications that combine today's Web technologies with tomorrow's mobile technologies including voice recognition (via Speech Interface Framework, including Speech Recognition Grammar Specification, Speech Synthesis Markup Language, and VoiceXML 2.0), handwriting recognition and gestures (via InkML).

Key W3C specifications:

Device Independence

W3C's Device Independence Activity is working on standards that will significantly lower the cost of authoring Web content that can be adapted to specific mobile devices or user preferences. It enables efficient multi-channel publication by single authoring.

Key W3C specifications:

Multimedia Messaging

Various versions of the W3C specification SMIL are at the heart of today's and future MMS systems (MMS SMIL, 3GPP SMIL). MMS will also use W3C's SVG to provide attractive vector graphics and animations. Finally, it will be possible to use XHTML in an MMS message to include traditional Web content.

Key W3C specifications:

Partner Organizations

The W3C develops technologies designed to interoperate. In many cases it works with other organizations in order to achieve the best solution. In the mobile area, W3C is liaising with the following:

W3C Members Involved

Access BitFlash France Telecom Microsoft Openwave Siemens Vocalocity
Adobe Boeing Fraunhofer Institute Mitsubishi Electric Opera Software Sky Think System Vodafone
Agfa-Gevaert Canon HP MobileAware Oracle SnowShore Networks VoiceGenie Technologies
Alcatel Cisco IBM NEC Panasonic Sony Volantis
America Online Comverse INRIA Nokia RealNetworks Sun Microsystems Voxeo
Apple Corel Intel Nortel Networks SAP Telera WGBH
Aspect CWI IWA/HWG NTT DoCoMo Savage Software Tellme Networks Zoomon
AT&T EDS KDDI Nuance Communications ScanSoft T-Online International
Avaya Ericsson Kirusa OnMobile Systems Segala Toyohashi University of Technology
BeVocal Expway Loquendo Openstream Sharp V-Enable

About W3C/Join W3C

In 1994, the formation of the World Wide Web Consortium was motivated by increasing demands from a wide range of organizations and their markets for Web infrastructure that is based on open, interoperable standards. Today, corporations, research groups, non-profit organizations and governmental agencies are enjoying a return on investments by partnering their capabilities to the collaborative power of nearly 400 Member organizations and the Consortium's technical staff in leading the future development of the World Wide Web.

W3C is an international industry consortium jointly run by MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (MIT CSAIL) in the USA, the European Research Consortium for Informatics and Mathematics (ERCIM) headquartered in France and Keio University in Japan. Services provided by the Consortium include: a repository of information about the World Wide Web for developers and users, and various prototype and sample applications to demonstrate use of new technology. For more information see http://www.w3.org/

Philipp Hoschka
Last modified: $Date: 2005/05/09 09:40:16 $
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