Yesterday, TechCrunch published a guest post by Vic Gundotra, Vice President of Engineering for Google’s mobile and developer products, with the title: Follow the Mobile User.

Kudos to the editor for combining in one short title the three very keywords that made all ring bells go off in my monday-morning-challenged brain, on day 2 of daylight saving time. They worked better than a caffeine shot.

The post is a fully disclosed Google take on what will enable the growth of mobile Internet usage (in the US, with projections sort-of worldwide) based on a fair amount of hard data, some of which from Google’s internal sources.

Gundotra builds his argument around three enabling factors: “simpler data plans, better web browsers, and a smoother on-device experience“, which equal:

  • cheaper mobile Internet connectivity: tough to disagree here;
  • better browsers, that let us go on the Internet the way we’re used to with PCs. That is, give us a browser that works like the browser we’re used to;
  • more usable applications, that make it easy to find, try and access mobile data services. In short: improve the usability.

Good reading to start off the week mumbling on future trends.  It’s a view on infrastructure and software as enablers, takes for granted 3G network coverage and may be a one-sided view (as remarked in the comments, also worth reading). Still, it’s got some figures, not only opinions, and highlights three key preconditions of technology adoption that can easily apply beyond the industrialised world.  Food for thought for the ICT4D community’s attempt to identify the content and context enablers of the mobile Web in research, agriculture and development at large.

Should you decide to read the full post on TechCrunch, you may want to mind this slang alert:

  • phat: acronym for “Pretty, Hot, and Tempting” (source)
  • fugly: very, very ugly (source)
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