An article published earlier last week by the Chronicle of Higher Education discussed colleges focusing less on mobile apps for their institutions and more on mobile sites. There are so many different kinds of smartphones on the market (Blackberry, Apple, Microsoft, Google), and all run on their own apps. The more smartphone users colleges want to reach, the more kinds of apps need to be created for the different devices. This costs time, money, and requires constant updates as technology quickly evolves.
So, rather than creating mobile apps, colleges are leaning towards the idea of creating mobile websites for themselves. Mobile websites are simplified versions of sites specially made for viewing on a mobile device’s web browser. Although they aren’t as quickly accessible as mobile apps, one mobile site will run on any smartphone with internet access and a web browser.
Currently, the University of Washington has both iPhone and Blackberry mobile apps, as well as a mobile website: m.uw.edu.