Mobile learning is an incredible innovation that brings training to your learners right where they already are--on their mobile devices. At least that's the idea. In practice, it doesn't always work that way. As it turns out, not every single type of training is appropriate for mobile. NogginLabs' Founder Brian Knudson talks about the process of deciding whether mobile is the way to go.
If you're thinking about mobile learning, here are some things to consider. First, do you have any users who have mobile devices? Seems like the most basic question to start with, but you'd be surprised how many folks know that they want mobile, because they read it in a learning magazine, or in the popular media, and know that it's moving forward, but don't actually have any users that have mobile devices.
Here are some initial questions:
- What kind of experience do I want to have?
- What kind of training is this?
- How interactive should it be?
- Should it be tracked?
All of these more detailed questions start to come in play.
One challenge you may run into when you decide that you want to have a mobile strategy is that the mobile landscape is wide open. It's like the wild west. You have all the different iPads with different resolutions, different speeds, and different capabilities. You have all of the iPhones and iTouches that fall under that category, that have a very small interaction and resolution area. Then of course, the lovely wild west of Android, which can fully be supported, but frankly, doesn't seem to have a single standard.
You can have different browsers, different sizes, different devices that come out, because there are so many companies building those. They're coming out constantly, and you have to step back and say, What's important to us? Is there a core platform like in the PC world, typically in corporate America, that you want to lock into and test on, or do you want it to work on everything? Everything that could ever come out, I want this application to run on. All of these things are possible. These are technology choices. It will guide your decision-making as you think about going to a mobile strategy.