Top-level domain .mobi launched

By Derek Sooman on
Today sees the launch of the new .mobi top-level domain, which will be exclusively for use with mobile phones and other mobile devices. The idea is that sites ending with ".mobi" will host content that will be specifically tailored for mobile devices. Most of the decent names are likely to have been claimed already, though, and some 13,000 companies have already registered .mobi addresses as part of a pre-registration process. Neil Edwards, CEO of DotMobi (company organising the top-level domain) has also claimed that the company is going to be firm with anyone that doesn’t follow the guidelines drawn up. It is predicted that some 200,000 mobile sites will register in the next year.

So far, the DotMobi registry has reserved over 5,500 so-called premium generic terms, which include such domain names as sex.mobi and sun.mobi. If you wish to apply for a premium name it will cost you $1,500 which you must pay to the World Intellectual Property Organisation for accreditation. Other than that, it costs about $25 (£14) to register a DotMobi site for a minimum two-year period.

Those who register .mobi addresses are being trusted to make mobile friendly content available through them, but at present there is nothing to stop you from viewing a .mobi page with a computer's browser. Some observers, such as Rachel Lashford, senior analyst and research manager at Canalys, believe that the whole thing is somewhat inane.

"Having another top level domain is a completely pointless exercise," she said.

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