Penn has developed a mobile website enabling users to access information about the University from any handheld device.
The browser-based site’s initial offerings include Penn news, as well as information about Penn’s libraries, athletics and public safety. It also offers maps, the University directory, a calendar and a search function.
Development of this service was made possible through a partnership between Penn’s Office of Information Systems and Computing (ISC), which has been exploring mobile technology architectures for some time, and University Communications, which will hold editorial responsibility for the content.
“We believe it’s a great tool for faculty, students, staff and alumni to stay in touch with the University while on the go,” says Lori Doyle, vice president of University Communications. “The University will continue to develop and improve the site by bringing in more content.”
Last spring, the Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project reported that the number of people in the nation using mobile devices to access the internet rose 52 percent in 2009. According to Pew, this kind of use has long been on the rise among young adults, but now also is gaining popularity with people who are 30 to 49. According to the study, 43 percent of people in that age bracket used a mobile device to access the internet last year, which is a 39 percent increase from 2008.
“This strategy allows us to leverage existing application investments, supporting the Penn culture of cost-effectiveness, while allowing delivery to many types of mobile devices,” explains Robin Beck, vice president of ISC.
The free mobile website can be found at m.upenn.edu. Enter into your mobile browser location bar (not Google search) the following: http://m.upenn.edu without the usual www and then bookmark it for future reference. Email help is available at: email@example.com.
For more information about the mobile website, visit www.upenn.edu/about/mobile.html.