LONDON, England – Following our chat with Sir Tim Berners-Lee yesterday, we caught up with the folks behind Nokia’s Ovi Browser, to find out how that’s enabling users of low cost devices to get easier access to the web. Andy Kelm is the general manager for the Ovi Browser Service Line at Nokia and he gave us a picture of what Nokia is trying to do to help those people currently disconnected from the web to get online. Read on after the jump.
Ovi Browser Beta is a first step towards building a whole new internet experience for users on Series 40 devices. In addition to improving the browsing experience to make it faster and more affordable, the team is aiming beyond browsing to enable consumers to experience the web in a more interactive way by giving developers new ways to connect with users.
Although the aim is to enable users to experience the web in a new way, it isn’t to try and create a closed ecosystem. The use case at the front of the Ovi Browser team’s mind is always to ensure that they’re offering users a virtual on-ramp to the web, and not a closed system. This taps in exactly to the original ethos of the web, where everyone (regardless of what device they use) and every piece of information is connected, or can be connected.
Sir Tim Berners-Lee highlighted Web Apps as being an ideal way to help enable users of low-bandwidth networks to get the most from the internet. By having the app on the device, but sticking with the original ethos of an open and connected web, users get the best of both worlds. Instant (or near instant) access, even over a low-bandwith network, thanks to the apps being stored locally, but still connected and with the ability to move seamlessly from the web app to the wider web.
Ovi Browser Beta is just a first step. There’s more to come but unfortunately for us, Kelm wouldn’t be drawn on what shape that might take. It’s safe to say though I think that it’ll be exciting and it’ll sure go a long way towards connecting that next billion.