|Submitted by Elteto on Fri, 07/08/2011 - 18:20|
As mobile device usage proliferates, colleges find that it makes more sense to simply publish mobile versions of their sites.
The Chronicle of Higher Education has an article about colleges increasingly focusing on optimizing their web sites for mobile browsers, instead of investing time and money into downloadable apps.
This makes perfect sense to me. Seeing the overwhelming amount of apps available for various platforms, I honestly believe that some users download these apps simply for the "I got an app for it!" coolness factor. The fact that many of these apps merely stream information from the web is ignored by most users.
As the article points out, releasing an app requires all departments on a campus to submit their input by a set deadline, and development and updates cost money. Changes to the functionality of a web site, however, can be implemented easily, and every time a visitor reloads a page, the updates are immediately reflected. With apps, a user has to be regularly reminded to download an updated version. These apps just add to the load of the already nearly maxed-out memory of mobile devices.
I do understand the point about mobile apps being able to access the functions of a smart phone, but do most college apps really take advantage of mobile phone hardware, or do they mainly only access content from web servers?