Baris Karadogan writes:
The problem statement is as follows: The web experience on handheld devices is awful. It really is. People are scared to surf the web on a handheld.
The causes of the problem are, in order of severity: 1) Small screen size 2) Lack of a powerful browser that can run common internet plugins such as Flash, ActiveX, toolbars etc. 3) Low bandwidth.
Enter Apple. First, they wait until EDGE and 3G is imminent and solve problem 3, low bandwidth. Secondly, the reality distortion zone, makes Apple put OS X on the iPhone. That solves problem 2. Whatever file format that works on your MAC (or PC) now works on your phone. No need for the “lite” versions of technologies. You have a uniform browsing experience. This is already huge.
Then comes the two main design innovations. First, make the screen bigger by eliminating the keyboard, that’s phenomenal. Second, put the killer UI where a “double-tap” blows up the part of the web page you are reading. You can also do the “pinch move” and blow up sections you need and go back and forth. This is the design solution, it is elegant, and looks like it works. All of the transcoding, reformatting, wapping and all that technological gunk is blown away as if they were made of dust. This is the power of design. What an army of technologists couldn’t solve by technology, Apple solved by design.