CNET owned Silicon.com, a UK based news site targeted at corporate IT managers, now has a mobile edition. The announcement is here and Silicon.com is promoting its .mobi with a link and a banner ad on the PC site’s front page. A word of warning though, the announcement says in a big bold green font that the mobile URL is www.silicon.mobi but that address just gives me a “Page Not Found” error. The correct address is siliconuk.mobi which appears elsewhere on the page in a smaller font. You can also text silicon to 63320 to get the link pushed to your phone (I suspect this only works in the UK).
To be honest, I’d never heard of Silicon.com until I saw a mention of the new mobile site at mobility.mobi. I was pleasantly surprised, the mobile site is quite nicely done with about 40 stories divided into News and Commentary sections. The items contain the full text (but no images) of the same article on the PC site and everything is paginated to a maximum of 10 KB total page weight for fast loading and compatibility with even the most basic of mobile browsers. Usability is OK, with section “tab” links at the top of each page and inter-page navigation links and a search box at the bottom. There are no accesskey accelerators, unfortunately. Something like 1 for next pag, 2 for previous, 9 for Home does so much for efficient reading on a traditional mobile keypad, I really don’t get why so few sites use them. For a good example of the use of accesskeys take a look a the mobile edition of The New York Times.
As for the content, Silicon.com seems a lot livelier than IT news stalwarts like Information Week, EWeek and InfoWorld. Articles are interesting, well-written and in-depth. And there’s a lot more coverage of mobile technology than on the other (US based) IT sites. I saw recent articles on Android and QR Codes on the PC Site. Strangely, if you search for “Android” or “QR Code” on the mobile site you won’t find those articles. I don’t know whether the site search is just wonky or if the mobile site ONLY includes 40 recent items with no access to the archives.
Even if you are not an IT manager, I think you will find Silicon.com and, in spite of the limitations sliconuk.mobi, good sources for general Tech News.
Mobile Link: siliconuk.mobi
Ratings: Content: Usability: