Mobile Internet Birthday

22Nov07

I know the digital revolution is meant to have changed everything in the blink of an eye, but here’s a question for you:

How long ago did the first mobile internet connection take place?

I admit working on my first website in 1993 and advising a major brand to develop their first website in 1994. My first modem connection was 14kb – imagine my glee when I skipped the 28kb standard and soared up to 33kb! This was of course a time when ISDN was around 100 or 250kb. Artwork files only took a couple of hours to send!

But as to when the internet first went mobile? Well the answer surprised me.

Apparently it was 30 years ago today. Bon aniverse mobile internet.

This milestone seems frighteningly long ago don’t you think? But also it seems to have taken an age for the technology to demonstrate the sort of functionality that the average digital consumer craves – web-browsing remotely at near broadband speeds or downloading music on their mobile phone where and when they want at low cost. Between the flop of WAP and functionality of HSDPA 3.5G (where you can get reception), there appears to have been quite a delay – a tech functionality gap between promise and delivery. If man can go from first achieving powered flight (1903) to actually setting foot on the moon (1969) so quickly; why so long from first invention to making the internet mobile? It’s not rocket science!

Personally I find the mobile internet still has a long way to go in terms of offering the connectivity and speed I’m looking for to enjoy media on the move. Even with HSDPA, I can’t imagine downloading a 2 hour movie on the move that easily or affordably just yet.

Let’s hope the next 3 years are more dynamic in terms of performance leaps and pricing!

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