Webmasters must adapt to wireless

Webmasters beware: By the end of 2002, the world will have more subscribers

capable of wireless Internet access than those with wired access, according

to a forecast by International Data Corp.

Currently, more than 40 million U.S. households are online, but there

are more than 75 million cellular/personal communications systems (PCS)

subscribers and more than 40 million paging subscribers, according to Iain

Gillott, an analyst with IDC, Framingham, Mass.

By mid-2001, all digital cellular/PCS handsets shipped in the world

will be Wireless Application Protocol-capable, so the number of people accessing

the Internet from wireless devices could increase dramatically, Gillott

said.

The changing numbers will have a huge impact on information systems

staff and Webmasters, Gillott said.

Users accessing a World Wide Web site via a phone with a little screen

will not be able to display the same information that PC users see, he said.

Organizations will need to think about displaying the information on their

Web sites for wireless device users or perhaps having two sites, he said.

IDC is a subsidiary of International Data Group Inc., the parent company

of the IDG News Service and Federal Computer Week.

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