The UI Problem
But -- that’s not to say that just changing the user interface alone won’t do the trick for some vendors. If imitation is indeed the most sincere form of flattery, than have a look at the HTC Touch. This smartphone uses Windows Mobile 6, but has a gestural interface reminiscent of that on the iPhone. Slide your finger, get a result -- I’m sure it takes a little practice, but it is cool regardless. And, like the iPhone, no keyboard: Soft keyboards could become a big thing, along with tiny little bottles of screen cleaner packaged with designer wipes.
But, seriously, no single user interface is going to make everyone happy -- some degree of frustration is inevitable. It would be nice if mobile devices would allow some degree of customization here, rather than forcing everyone to learn something new. Inflexibility in the UI could indeed backfire, as IT departments suffering from increasing training and support costs put fewer mobile devices on the ever-critical Approved List.
— Craig Mathias is Principal Analyst at the Farpoint Group , an advisory firm specializing in wireless communications and mobile computing. Special to Unstrung