Feeds

Goodbye YourWAP, I'm glad I knew you

Pioneer of mobile email bites the dust

High performance access to file storage

Comment I recently got an email telling me that YourWAP is closing at the end of this month, and that if I've got anything important stored there I need to retrieve it before it goes.

YourWAP was a pioneer of mobile email. In the days before BlackBerry - or at least, before BlackBerry hit Europe - it was one of the first services to make mobile email a practical proposition. It was also one of the first to use WAP effectively.

The proposition was simple - it was an email aggregator that polled your existing POP3 accounts, but as well as Webmail it also offered access to the aggregated email via WAP. This gave you a lightweight and surprisingly fast view of your in-box, plus the ability to read text email on even a fairly basic mobile phone.

Its designers at German mobile app developer O3sis had realised - as did several other unsung heroes of WAP, such as those at Kizoom who were behind the original NationalRail enquiry site - that WAP was actually rather good at delivering text, but you really wanted to use the Web for anything more complex or interactive, such as setting up your user preferences.

Their problem was all the idiot designers who didn't understand that, and earned WAP a terrible reputation by trying to use it as a mobile version of the Web.

(Some might argue WAP was also bypassed by increased mobile data speeds and CompactHTML browsers, which made lightweight text browsing less relevant. All I can say to that is either they don't use mobile data much, or they don't pay their own mobile phone bills...)

Of course, I didn't have anything important stored on my YourWAP account. Indeed, when I looked I discovered I'd not used it in almost a year. There's plenty of other ways to push email to mobile phones now, and many email services have versions of their user interface optimised for mobile phones and PDAs. Some, such as Gmail, even have downloadable client software for smartphones.

YourWAP was ahead of its time, and yes, it did get bypassed. It was part of the learning process that brought us today's mobile email services though, and I was sad to hear the news of its imminent death. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
Skype pimps pro-level broadcast service
Playing Cat and Mouse with the media
Beat it, freetards! Dyn to shut down no-cost dynamic DNS next month
... but don't worry, charter members, you're still in 'for life'
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
Facebook splats in-app chat, whacks brats into crack yakety-yak app
Jibber-jabbering addicts turfed out just as Zuck warned
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.