I've written about using free mashup services like xFruits, Feed2Mobile, Mofuse, FeedM8 and Winksite to quickly create a mobile website from your blog's RSS feed. It's an incredibly easy way to get a high quality mobile site.
Still I was surprised to see that Nokia is using Winksite and Mippin to create mobile versions of Nokia Conversations
Conversations, which launched Monday, aims to put a more personal face on the world's largest manufacturer of mobile phones. It's the baby of Nokia's Charlie Schick whose personal Lifeblog site has long been a must read for me. Charlie's an original thinker with a strong passion for social media and opening up dialogs so I expect Nokia Conversations to be anything but a typical boring corporate blog. The site went live with a dozen posts, channels on YouTube, Flickr, del.icio.us and Share on Ovi plus the two mobile editions.
It's interesting that Nokia didn't build a mobile site in-house, something they certainly have the recourses to do. Instead they turned to two established mobile communities. Winksite and Mippin are free services that are available to all bloggers and anyone else with an RSS feed.
And it's not just Nokia that's doing this. While obviously not in the same league as Nokia, hot startup ReadBurner, a meme tracker that finds the most shared Google News items, just opened their mobile site (m.readburner.com) using mofuse. The Hockey News, largest selling print hockey publication in North American, has a new mobile site too (mobile.THN.com ), created and hosted at FeedM8.
All four sites use Mippin, Winksite, FeedM8 and Mofuse's ability to create an instant mobile web site from a RSS feed.
So why would Nokia, ReadBurner and The Hockey News turn to off-the shelf solutions for their mobile sites? I'm sure time to market and cost are drivers, but I think it's more than that. Mashups of all kinds have achieved credibility as a an effective way to build a service or extend an existing one's reach. For Nokia, if probably helps that Winksite and Mippin are mobile communities as much as they are mobilization services. Both enable sharing sites and items with friends using email or SMS. Winksite lets you add all sorts of social features to a site including comments, a chat room, guest book, membership community, forum, event listings, links page and surveys. Nokia is using several of these including the links, comments, community and a brand new feature (not yet publicly released) - streaming video! Mippin users can give sites a thumbs up or down with the highest rated sites (one of which is currently Conversations) featured on Mippin's Most Popular page.
I think we will see more and more mainstream publishers using mobile mashup services like these to launch mobile versions. These services provide high availability and a professional looking site that works on almost any phone with little or no effort or cost to the publisher. It's a quick, risk free way for publishers to test the mobile waters. Whatever the reasons I think congratulations are in order to Winksite and Mippin for landing Nokia as a client and also to FeedM8 and Mofuse for snagging a couple of high profile sites.
Related: David Harper’s Different Things - Nokia Conversations Launches Mobile Version With Winksite
MoFuse Blog - ReadBurner Goes Mobile With MoFuse
Wap Review - 4 Easy Ways to Make your Blog Mobile Friendly